Sam’s Club gains city approval for 140,000-square-foot layout center in Bentonville

by Paul Gatling ([email protected]) 5,611 views 

Sam’s Club, the warehouse club division owned by Wal-Mart Stores Inc., is planning to build a new layout center in Bentonville, just a few steps from its headquarters on Simple Savings Drive.

The company received approval from the Bentonville Planning Commission on Tuesday (Dec. 19) to build a 140,000-square-foot building on a 10-acre site at 1400 S.E. S St, directly across from Sam’s Club headquarters.

The company has not announced plans for the new facility. Company spokeswoman Carrie McKnight said there is not a definitive timeline to begin construction. The new building will replace the existing 130,000-square-foot layout center in Springdale, inside a former Sam’s Club store at 2008 S. Thompson St. Bringing the layout center closer to Sam’s Club headquarters will obviously be more efficient for merchants who do business with the retailer.

A value for the project was not included in the large-scale development plan submitted by Sam’s Club, but based on previous reporting of similar commercial warehouse construction in Benton County within the past three years, the building value could cost up to $8.7 million, based on a construction cost of $55 per square foot. That doesn’t factor in the interior buildout cost.

Wal-Mart purchased the land six years ago for $2.1 million. A limited liability company led by Ivan E. Crossland Jr. and John Lawrence was the previous owner.

2017 has been a big year for construction investment and announcements for Wal-Mart. The company is building a $110 million distribution center at 5800 S.W. Regional Airport Blvd., about five miles southwest of the Wal-Mart headquarters on Walton Boulevard. The new building will include 1.03 million square feet of warehouse space, 216,000 square feet dedicated to shipping operations, and 16,307 square feet of office space.

Wal-Mart also announced in September its plans to build a new home office in Bentonville. The new corporate campus will be built on the east side of Southeast J Street, bordered by Arkansas Highway 102 to the south and Arkansas Highway 72 (Central Avenue) to the north.

The project will be built in phases, and Wal-Mart corporate spokesman Randy Hargrove initially said the company anticipates construction will take between 5 to 7 years. Since September, Wal-Mart has made no additional announcements regarding the project, which could be in line for the largest tax incentive package in Arkansas history.