CEDAR HILLS — City officials gathered in front of a small crowd Friday morning to officially break ground at the site of the new Cedar Hills Wal-Mart, which has been in the works for nearly two years.

The site is located near 4800 West on Cedar Hills Drive (10100 North), just across the street from Lone Peak High School, and developers are hopeful that the store will be completed by November.

"We are looking forward to serving our customers in Cedar Hills and are excited to become an integral part of the community," said Karianne Fallow, a senior manager of public affairs and government relations for Wal-Mart.

The store will be unique to Cedar Hills as the city and Wal-Mart worked to create a store that blends in with the community. They feel they have done that by dropping some of the merchandise from their typical stores while still incorporating a full grocery store.

This drastically cuts the size of the building — stores in Orem and Lindon are near 220,000 square feet, and the Cedar Hills store will be about 100,000 square feet less than that. The 18-acre land will also feature a large amount of landscaping with a mix of both evergreen and deciduous trees.

"The city has required a lot of things, and they stepped up to the plate and have delivered," said Cedar Hills City Manager Konrad Hildebrandt. "It is a real nice community-friendly facility, and Wal-Mart is just getting into that. They are entering that market, and Cedar Hills is lucky enough to be the first of this type."

The site will also feature two additional commercial buildings on the west side of the project, which will be about 18,000 square feet. Phillips Edison and Co. Vice President Roy Williams said that they will be developing the two buildings and are currently negotiating with possible tenants.

Depending on the size of each store, there could be eight to 12 retail stores within the project, he said.

This was the second time that the city had been working with Wal-Mart, but the prior talks were halted by the city's stance on beer sales and Sunday business. But a majority of citizens of Cedar Hills voted against the ban in a 2005 referendum, opening the door for a project like this.

"I have been working on this project since the day I took office, and I was actively interested in it even before that," said Cedar Hills Mayor Michael C. McGee. "This is the second time Wal-Mart has come, and I was committed to making this deal work for the benefit of Cedar Hills and Wal-Mart both, and I think we have done that."

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