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Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Four years and counting, still no Sam’s Club at Marquis Shopping Center

The Sam’s Club was approved for this plot of land in the Marquis Shopping Center. (Andrew Harris/WYDaily)

Four years later, the site is still vacant.

A Sam’s Club whose arrival in York County has been anticipated since 2013 is still no closer to opening, according to officials with the company and the county.

The York County Board of Supervisors approved a 136,500 square-foot national club discount retailer— since revealed to be Sam’s Club— for the Marquis Shopping Center in November 2013.

Yet when asked about the delay, a spokesman for Walmart, which owns Sam’s Club, declined to elaborate.

“We do not have any updates to share at this time,” said Phillip Keene, Director of Corporate Communications for Northeast/Southeast/Mid-Atlantic Divisions.

Sams Club Fayetteville, Arkansas
Sams Club Fayetteville, Arkansas

York County officials have not heard any specifics from Sam’s Club either.

“We ask routinely, maybe every six months or so, but other than saying they’re working on it,” Sam’s Club has not informed York County as to their timeline, said the county’s Chief of Development Services Susan Kassel.

“Nobody has got any recent update,” Kassel added. “Once they acquired the property we were assured they were definitely going to build.”

Yet shoppers shouldn’t count on a groundbreaking any time soon.

While the county approved the site plan years ago, officials are still waiting for Sam’s Club to submit a building plan for the proposed store, Kassel said. Once that is received, reviewed and approved Sam’s Club would still need another permit — one for disturbing the land — before construction could begin.

Kassel said a huge national company like Sam’s Club may have the construction process down to a science — but they have not provided the county with a time frame for that, either.

sam's club still not open in York County
This conceptual rendering from 2014 showed what a proposed sign might look like with Sam’s Club at the site. (Photo courtesy York County)

Almost four years ago, Sam’s Club signaled bullishness about coming to the Historic Triangle.

“Along with its history, Williamsburg is a dynamic area with small businesses, families and emerging economic growth, and we feel like we can be a positive part of the community,” Sam’s Club Spokesperson Mark Scott wrote in a February 2014 email. “We hope to build long-term relationships in the region. We want to be a part of Williamsburg’s continued economic development.”

The retailer did not offer a timeframe at that time.

WYDaily reported in spring 2015 that Sam’s Club purchased the land and expected to open sometime in 2016.


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