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    First Walmart Neighborhood Market Opens in Va.

    Two more locations featuring the mega-retailer's smaller supermarket format are set to open in the state.


    Walmart opens its first Neighborhood Market in the state of Virginia today, a 45,000-square-foot site on East Little Creek Road in Norfolk, according to a published report.

    The store, which has a fresh-food focus, is about one-fifth the size of a Supercenter, and features small specialty areas with track lighting and curved walls for produce, meats, and deli, noted the Norfolk Virginian-Pilot.

    "We're designed to be upscale," the store's manager, Jackie Russell told the newspaper, with "better presentation" but retaining Wal-Mart's low prices. The store carries a more limited assortment, concentrating on the most popular items.

    Other store features include a bigger frozen-food section than in a Supercenter, as well as pizza ovens to bake slices to go.

    The new store replaces a Winn-Dixie, which closed in 2004.

    Walmart plans to open a Neighborhood Market later this year in Williamsburg and another in Virginia Beach in 2010. The concept first launched in 1998 in the company's hometown of Bentonville, Ark., and there are now more than 145 locations, chiefly in the South.

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