A 155,000-square-foot Wal-Mart store won’t anchor the $190 million Mission Gateway project in suburban Kansas City, which developers have been trying to get off the ground for more than a decade.
But Tom Valenti, a principal with Cameron Group of East Syracuse, N.Y., said he still isn’t giving up on the mixed-use project.
Valenti said Monday that he and Wal-Mart officials “mutually agreed that we would move on without them.” He said the developers plan to replace Wal-Mart with two or three other retailers, allowing the project to proceed under a site plan the Mission City Council approved in January.
Wal-Mart, which agreed to come to Mission Gateway five years ago, had planned to close its 20-year-old Roeland Park store in conjunction with the opening of the new store. But Delia Garcia, director of communications for Wal-Mart, said the retailer recently decided to stay put in Roeland Park and remodel that store based on problems with the Mission Gateway proposal and research indicating that Wal-Mart investments in staff and existing stores had led to eight straight quarters of same-store sales growth.
Valenti said Wal-Mart’s participation in Mission Gateway was probably doomed by the Mission City Council’s 7-1 vote Aug. 17 to reject his latest revised preliminary site plan.