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Could a Wal-Mart Grocery Store Replace Diamond Bar Ralphs?

The company that recently bought the Ralphs-anchored shopping center mentioned the major grocery retailer in a news release about the sale but now is mum.

The Diamond Bar Town Center, anchored by the shuttered Ralphs supermarket, has new ownership.

Could a tenant for the vacant grocery store be on the way soon?

In December, Retail Opportunity Investments Corp. announced in a news release that it had a binding contract to acquire the center at Diamond Boulevard and Grand Avenue for $27.8 million.

Ashley Bulot, a spokeswoman for the company, said by email this week that the deal went through but was mum on details about the company's intentions for the Ralphs site.

"We have closed on Diamond Bar, but at this time we are not at liberty to disclose what our plans are and who the anchor tenant is," she said.

However in the December news release on the sale, the investment company revealed that it had a major national retailer for the spot.

"The shopping center is approximately 107,000 square feet and is anchored by Wal-Mart, featuring Wal-Mart's new grocery-store format," officials said. "The property is located in Diamond Bar, California, within the Los Angeles metropolitan area and is currently 91.2% leased."

Wal-Mart officials did not return email requests for comment.

The retail giant's neighborhood markets are much smaller than the traditional Wal-Mart and typically feature a grocery store and pharmacy.

Marsha Roa, a Diamond Bar spokeswoman, said the city has not received any information about a new tenant movng into the old Ralphs location.

Under the city's regulations, a grocery chain wanting to open at the Ralph's location would not need to go before the Planning Commission for approval of a conditional use permit if the use remains the same, Roa said.

However, the new business would be required to get a city business license and possibly city issued permits for renovations, she said.

"Whether any project would require Planning Commission or City Council approval is always dependent on the specifics of the project," she said.

The Ralphs closed in August 2011. 

“Multiple things happened there that led to the closing of that location, it wasn’t just one issue,” said Ralphs spokesperson Kendral Royel after the closure, adding that an “inadequate sales performance" probably was one of the reasons.

Ralphs owns most of its stores, but in Diamond Bar's case, the chain had rented its space, Royel said.

A property spec sheet the city provided Patch last year shows that the 40,755 square foot Ralphs building has 60,000 vehicles pass by daily, and is a five minute drive from 22,463 residents. A business that would go in there would pay no city utility taxes, no city user fees, no city impact fees, and a low city business license fee, city officials said.

Would you like to see a Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market where the shuttered Ralphs is? Tell Us in the Comments Section.

Minnie Mouse February 09, 2013 at 10:41 PM
If you ever bothered to read a newspaper, you wouldn't need me to provide you with facts: http://makingchangeatwalmart.org/factsheet/
Michael February 09, 2013 at 11:49 PM
Wal-Mart complements K-Mart & Big Lots nicely- sounds like good discount shopping for Diamond Bar. People that park their cars on the street at night shop at these places, perfect fit.
Ray Russell February 10, 2013 at 12:26 AM
Still spouting uninformed rhetoric ? I read the papers. I know Walmart has problems. But these are theirs and not the communities that they are located in. You said they are bad for the community, now support that statement! Oh by the way, why do you hide behind a pseudonym ? Are you afraid for people to know who is so uninformed?
Tyler Baugh February 10, 2013 at 12:57 AM
Wal-Mart is economically and morally wrong for Diamond Bar.
Robert Corona February 10, 2013 at 12:58 AM
I will be rooting for Walmart... I am a regular customer. I go to the one in Industry, a one stop shopping center for me... I know most of the employees there. They love working there. Will switch to DB Walmart if they do open. Albertsons is super expensive compared to Walmart... Thats why they left Rowland Heights and HH... Noone would buy there.
Tyler Baugh February 10, 2013 at 01:02 AM
LOL. Love working there? They love their non existent benefits and their non existent pay.
Tyler Baugh February 10, 2013 at 01:07 AM
Please remove the American flag from your profile. It is an insult to have it and shop at Wal-Mart.
Minnie Mouse February 10, 2013 at 01:58 AM
Apparently YOU don't have to provide detailed evidence for your views, only those who disagree with you. Others are criticized by you for what YOU have done (provide no evidence for your views). As a matter of fact I did provide evidence in the form of a link to a whole series of detailed reports, but it seems your ability to comprehend numbers is rather limited. And of course I would use a pseudonym in order to avoid harassment in person from jerks in our community like ....
alan haskvitz February 10, 2013 at 03:04 AM
I don't know anyone who works at WalMart that loves his or her salary and benefits. Secondly, WalMart does not bring money into a community, it takes it from existing businesses. If Ralph's could not make it there that tells you that the community may not have been encouraged to shop locally. This news story shows how poorly WalMart pays. http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/money/industries/retail/story/2012-06-05/walmart-workers-air-complaints/55450634/1
Ray Russell February 10, 2013 at 07:25 AM
To MM evidently you don't read so very well! I have not expressed an opinion for or against Walmart. I've only asked you to show what Walmart does that is bad for the comunities where they are doing business. Yes you provided a link that shows they don't pay well. Is that all? You still haven't answered my questions. at this point I guess you either won't or can't.
Maria Lewis February 10, 2013 at 10:14 AM
Does this help? "The overwhelming weight of the independent research on the impact of Wal-Mart stores ... shows that Wal-Mart depresses area wages and labor benefits ... pushes out more retail jobs than it creates, and results in more retail vacancies," the report concluded. http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/02/03/us-walmart-newyork-idUSTRE7127GD20110203
Robert Corona February 10, 2013 at 05:10 PM
But yet people flock to them... always packed when I go... AND noone forces people to work there if they don't want to. I have left plenty of jobs that were just not for me. I guarantee you if Walmart opens in DB it will be successful. You guys that don't want it can go to Albertsons across the street. Very Simple.
Ray Russell February 10, 2013 at 07:52 PM
Sorry this article appears to be an unsupported he say, she say, type of argument. Yes the unions are against anything that says Walmart. Please, where is an unbiased report showing that Walmart damages local cities they are located in? Also please remember this is a grocery store, not a full spectrum Walmart.
alan haskvitz February 10, 2013 at 10:46 PM
Ray, Why don't you do you supply your own support for WalMart? For example, compare wages and benefits of like food outlets.
Ray Russell February 11, 2013 at 02:25 AM
Alan, I didn't say that I support Walmart in anyway! Many people keep making statement that Walmart is bad or would be bad for Diamond Bar. I would just like to know what the mean. What about this store will hurt this town. I don't believe low wages will hurt DB. I know they are hard on employees, but on this city, I just don't see it. The statement has been made, now someone convince me or tell me !
Daddyman February 11, 2013 at 06:58 AM
Ok looks like I need to say this since no one else will - Walmart brings a "ghetto" atmosphere to where ever it opens. I moved to Diamond Bar to get away from that. We have enough problems in north DB with undesirables around Kmart, CVS, Vons, etc. My vote is not for a Walmart.
Ray Russell February 11, 2013 at 07:40 AM
Thank you. At least someone has expressed an opinion as to why Walmart may be bad for DB. Any others?
sr February 11, 2013 at 02:35 PM
the real question here is will the Asian's shop at Walmart? Look around that center and see all of the signs in a foreign language.
Resident February 12, 2013 at 07:10 AM
Yes they are as cheap as the products they make.
Kathleen Brieske February 14, 2013 at 06:47 AM
Really happy to see that the old Ralphs bldg. has been sold and the possibility of a Wal-mart grocery store to open here in Diamond Bar is terrific. Wal-mart has great prices, products and they have an outstanding reputation in quality. Absolutely in favor of this idea!!!!!
alan haskvitz February 14, 2013 at 07:14 PM
I go to WalMart when I want to feel thin.....
E. February 14, 2013 at 07:44 PM
Agree 100%. As offensive as it may sound Walmart does bring about certain customers and a certain atmosphere, no matter what nice neighborhood you put a Walmart in. It is a snobby thing to say but it is true. Not only that, but the traffic at that intersection can already be a nightmare, add a Walmart and it will be much worse, especially with such a small parking lot. Even if a potential Walmart will be much smaller, I can think of many other markets that would thrive. I would love to see a Whole Foods there.
E. February 14, 2013 at 07:45 PM
I wouldn't doubt it, especially if there are any "maternity hotels" nearby.
John Zoeckler March 15, 2013 at 10:16 PM
Wal-Mart; destroying America, one main street at a time!
Nicole April 03, 2013 at 03:10 PM
I would love to see a Bristol Farms open at that location.
CHOUDHRY April 07, 2013 at 05:18 AM
NO WALMART NO NO NO. BUT WE NEED GROCERY STORE HERE. WHOLE FOOD , TRADER'S JOE OR NICE GROCERY STORE . DIAMOND BAR IS A COMMUNITY OF UPSCALE PEOPLE NOT LIVING ON EBT. CITY SHOULD DO SOME THING.
Yvonne April 07, 2013 at 10:55 PM
Yes Bristol Farms would be nice. Good call Nicole.
Okiedokie May 05, 2013 at 07:28 PM
I worked at that Ralph's location, and although they carried a large variety of organics and no added preservative products, the cliental only purchased the cheap sale items. The customers who shop in the Diamond Bar area are equity rich but living paycheck to paycheck and need a cheap alternative. I agree a Walmart center would be very successful in this location based on previous experience with the shoppers in this area. If its not on the advertisement, or marked down, it was not purchased.
Valerie Paige Goyer September 19, 2013 at 03:07 AM
We go to Chino Hills or Brea or Industry for everything, not because we want to, but because there is nothing here for us. I am DB born and raised; how sad to watch these other cities flourish around us. When Denny's became another tutoring outfit I was beyond annoyed. DB just does not have anything I need, so, I guess it's time to move on? The writing is on the wall. Ironically, I think a Wal-Mart grocery store will bring in people from outside of DB, meanwhile the fresh produce at Albertson's and Vons will continue to rot away on the shelf, like it does now.
Valerie Paige Goyer September 19, 2013 at 03:11 AM
I would also like to know how many more people living in DB would it take to make us attractive to the "other" retailers (TJ's Mother's Bristol, WF, Gelsons). Ling Ling Chang is quoted in saying that there is a strict formula used to measure population density in a 3-5 mile radius, and according to those numbers, DB doesn't cut it. How close/far are we. I want to believe this, but part of me wonders if this is another excuse. Maybe building some condos where K-Mart is would help our "situation"?

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