GREEN BAY - A Walmart store in downtown Green Bay could fill a demand for a grocery store in that area. But the idea is not sitting well with everyone.
Walmart has been looking at a property on the east side of Broadway near Kellogg Street, part of what was once the Larsen Canning Company.
The property is owned by On Broadway, Inc.
At Thursday night's meeting on downtown Green Bay's master plan. Some people liked the idea of Walmart moving in. But others said the big-box wouldn't fit with the downtown area.
We have reaction from both sides.
“Development is what we need and good corporate clients such as Walmarts are, nothing is better,” said Tom Van Oss, Green Bay.
“I will be very interested to see what the proposal is and if there is certainly any latitude or if it’s already something that's a done deal,” said Kathy Brockdorf, Alfa Bridal owner. “We're very concerned. We've really tried to build on the historical downtown Broadway aspect.”
Talks are only in the early stages, so there is no confirmed information about what Walmart is considering.
Whatever the proposal might turn out to be, many say downtown Green Bay needs a grocery store.
Teresa Patriquin shops at the Save-A-Lot in downtown Green Bay on a regular basis.
“I just like coming here because the prices are very good, and they have a pretty good little selection of stuff in here,” said Patriquin.
Save-A-Lot is one of the few grocery stores downtown.
It's what On Broadway officials call a food desert.
“The access to fresh fruits and vegetables and breads and all that stuff isn't close by,” said Christopher Naumann, On Broadway executive director.
Development at this Broadway location may be an answer.
I think people who are looking for the downtown area, I do think a grocer is simply a resource and an amenity that it's crucial for a healthy downtown,” said Naumann.
Across the Fox River at The Flats, opinions are mixed about a new grocery store downtown.
“It seems that a lot of stores are mostly at the outer rims of the city. And there's nothing really inside the city itself for grocery shopping,” said Robert Thompson, Green Bay.
“I don't think it fits with what they're trying to approve, or what we're trying to achieve, with the historical type, low key, family atmosphere,” said Jeff Van Straten, Green Bay.
Walmart has kept the specifics of any proposal quiet.
In a statement to FOX 11, a Walmart official said:
"We recognize the community's need for more convenient access to the items their families want and need. It goes on to say, Walmart will evaluate the site to propose a store that best fits the needs of the community.”
“I don't think it would be terrible, I think it would be nice for the people that live in the area here,” said Patriquin.
On Broadway officials say the need is there.
“Now the question is how we can convince those investors and those business people to put those uses here,” said Naumann.
Nothing has been decided as of yet.
On Broadway says it expects to get a proposal from Walmart in about a month.
A group called New Leaf Market is also looking into the possibility of opening downtown co-op grocery store on the east side of the Fox River.
Marinette Marine is preparing to christen one of its Littoral Combat Ships.
A survey of local businesses looked at employee numbers and overall outlook for the coming year.
Those who do go to the Packers-Falcons game Sunday will help honor a green and gold legend.
The cold caused some problems in the Fox Valley Friday.
A donation from an area bank will be making a difference in the years to come for Green Bay East High School.
A Pearl Harbor survivor was given a special honor Friday morning at Green Bay East High School.