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Walmart, 1326 Bush River Road: 5 February 2021   6 comments

Posted at 11:09 pm in closing

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I used to wonder about this Walmart on Bush River Road in the old Bush River Mall location. I would be eating late at Fuddruckers or El Chico and decide I would stop by Walmart on the way home to pick up a few things when it was less crowded. The first few times I found it closed, I figured they were ramping up staffing and hours at a new store, but eventually I figured out it was never going to be a 24-hour store, as most were at that time.

The State has the story, attributing the closing to "low sales", though I suspect shrinkage and other factors played into things as well. The pharmacy will be closing this week, on 22 January.

(Hat tip to commenter Larry)

UPDATE 1 April 2021 -- All the signage is down, though the place still looks pretty good:

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Written by ted on January 20th, 2021

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6 Responses to 'Walmart, 1326 Bush River Road: 5 February 2021'

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  1. I wonder if the gas station will be closing as well? I will miss this WM as it was an easy stop off I-20 and a quick drive to get on I-126.

    Beth

    21 Jan 21 at 7:45 am

  2. This one was far nicer than the one on Harbison.

    Tom

    21 Jan 21 at 12:01 pm

  3. @Tom...I agree 100%. I would jump off I-20 around 7 am and hit this Walmart before heading to work. The shelves were stocked and very neat. I hated messing them up. I'm sure they looked differently by the afternoon though. I do recall some type of gunman/shooting there a few years ago? Anyone else remember that? I never felt unsafe and would shop, albeit quickly, before the crack of dawn.

    Beth

    22 Jan 21 at 7:50 am

  4. I believe the shooting at this location was in 2017. But, there have been shootings at the Harbison location as well. General safety advice: If you'd like to reduce your chances of being involved in violent criminal behavior, stay away from Walmart.

    That said, I used to shop at this location when I lived in the area. From the day it opened, it was definitely nicer than the Harbison location. Usually well stocked and usually clean.

    People complain vociferously about so called "food deserts". Regardless of the size of your business, it's pretty tough to keep afloat when you have an issue with theft.

    Lone Wolf

    22 Jan 21 at 10:27 am

  5. I liked this Walmart because I felt it was a major improvement for the property it sat on after Bush River Mall sat abandoned for several years (Target moved out in 1999, the mall was razed to make room for this Walmart in early 2006). When I had the need, I always tried to go to this Walmart to do what I could to ensure its success. Not only that, I remember several folks I spoke with agreeing with my sentiment that it was so nice to see it go in a place that had been ugly, abandoned, going downhill, etc. I even remember The State running an article about it calling it a big boost for Bush River Road. Unfortunately predictions for it to boost the rest of Bush River Road never came to fruition as much as people had hoped when it was announced (i.e. old Key West Grill sitting abandoned (and finally razed), Dutch Square has lost over 40 stores (some of which came and went) in the time this Walmart has been here, etc.)

    One of the things that has been mentioned is a top 10 list of places City of Columbia police were dispatched to and several of them were different Walmarts we have. I do remember the officer involved shooting Beth & Lone Wolf mentioned in 2017 and also it being the target of an arsonist on NYE a few years prior to that (though Harbison and Garners Ferry have had arson incidents since then as well).

    I have gotten to where the attitude towards self-checkout has dissuaded me from shopping at Walmart (in general) and also a certain vibe many of them give off.

    Lone Wolf is right that it is tough to keep a business afloat with theft issues going on...theft has been mentioned as a factor in several grocery store closings that have featured here over the years...not only that, but a typical grocery store's profit margin is 1-2% and there isn't a grocer in the world that can afford to operate in a location where the little profit they make is literally walking out the door.

    Andrew

    22 Jan 21 at 11:12 am

  6. Folks, Walmart #4379 is now history (May 9, 2007-February 5, 2021)...

    I remember it being announced in December 2005 and people saw it as hopeful for the future of Bush River Road...

    In early 2006 what was left of Bush River Mall was demolished...then on May 9, 2007 Walmart opened...I did shop there when I had a need as I remember wanting to do what I could to ensure its success but now I very rarely go to Walmart.

    It did bring new life into the site itself but the optimism that it would revive the Bush River strip didn't come to pass as initially hoped...The State even ran an article profiling it as a "big boost for Bush River Road." Unfortunately that boost didn't have much staying power..as was discussed in Have Your Say it had its share of issues that unfortunately did it in and now what lies ahead remains to be seen.

    Andrew

    6 Feb 21 at 1:01 pm

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