Walmart Canada invests $115 million, employs 1,400 to build state-of-the-art, sustainable distribution hub in Alberta



    MISSISSAUGA, ON, May 8 /CNW/ - Walmart Canada will invest $115 million to
build a state-of-art distribution centre in Balzac, Alberta. Among the largest
refrigerated buildings in Canada, the centre will be 400,000 square feet in
size and serve as a distribution hub for fresh food destined for Walmart
stores in Western Canada. This will support the expansion of Walmart's modern
Supercentre format, which adds a complete range of groceries to its
traditional general merchandise selection, as well as its commitment to being
a leader on environmental sustainability.
    "Even in tough times, we continue to invest in our communities and in our
business," said Andy Ellis, Sr. Vice President, Supply Chain and Logistics,
Walmart Canada. "This distribution centre provides us a state-of-the-art
facility, custom made to deliver the freshest products available for our
Walmart customers all across the West."
    Walmart Canada has invested $220 million in the past year to modernize
and expand its distribution network. The network supplies 312 stores
nationwide from eight distribution facilities: four sites in Calgary, Alberta,
including Balzac; one site in Cornwall, Ontario; and three sites in
Mississauga, including a newly opened 450,000-square-foot, refrigerated centre
that will be the model for the Balzac location. Walmart Canada's nationwide
distribution activities employ more than 3,200 Canadians.
    Construction of the Balzac distribution centre will begin immediately and
will be conducted by Calgary-based development firm Stuart Olson. The
distribution centre will open in late 2010 and will be operated by Canadian
logistics firm Centric Retail Logistics. The Walmart-owned site is expected to
generate approximately 1,400 jobs, including 800 trade and construction roles,
and 600 jobs once the distribution centre is fully operational.
    The facility will be built and operated with rigid environmental
standards, including the following:

    
    -  Environmentally preferable construction materials and building
       equipment: highly efficient insulation; coloured concrete floors
       instead of chemical intensive tiling in all office areas; concrete
       supplemented with fly ash instead of cement; substantial roof and wall
       insulation; environmentally preferable paint finishes; etc.
    -  Temperature control: a white roof to reflect sunlight and reduce
       cooling needs; high-efficiency motors, variable speed fans, cooling
       equipment, air doors between different temperature zones to minimize
       heat transfer; demand-response systems to reduce peak-load energy
       draw; and renewable energy sources to minimize electrical consumption.
    -  Responsible refrigeration: High-density storage to minimize heat loss;
       natural refrigerants to avoid ozone depletion and global warming;
       biodegradable refrigerants; etc.
    -  Operations that reduce waste and energy use: motion-detecting LED
       lighting; electric forklifts; recycling of all varieties of shipping
       materials; salvaging food waste; automated shrink wrapping machines to
       minimize waste; chemical free water treatment of process water to
       allow grey waste water to be used for site irrigation.
    

    "This facility is a wonderful project on many levels," said Paul Polson,
Vice President, Stuart Olson Constructors Inc. "We're helping Walmart build
one of the largest perishable-food buildings in Canada, to very high
environmental standards, injecting more than $100 million and a thousand jobs
into the local economy."

    ABOUT WALMART CANADA: Walmart Canada operates a growing chain of discount
stores and Supercentres with 312 locations nationwide serving more than one
million Canadians each day. With more than 80,000 associates, Walmart Canada
is the nation's fourth largest employer. The company has committed to three
long-term goals for environmental sustainability that guide its operations and
partnerships: 1. To become a zero waste business; 2. To operate with 100 per
cent renewable energy; 3. To provide customers with products that sustain
resources and the environment.

    ABOUT STUART OLSON: Stuart Olson is a progressive builder and
Construction Manager with an especially effective way of doing business. Our
success is founded on our holistic, team-based approach that brings clients,
contractors and consultants together as equals. We are one of Western Canada's
oldest and largest construction companies, with offices in Calgary, Edmonton
and Vancouver. We take pride in the fact that we have retained a very
hands-on, client-focused style of business. Stuart Olson is at the forefront
of the green building movement and has a full understanding of
LEED(R)certification through the Canadian Green Building Council (CaGBC). We
have made the corporate commitment to be involved in, and promote the
continued growth of, green construction projects in Canada. We strive to
protect the environment on every project, made evident through our extensive
experience with the construction of LEED(R) projects.





For further information:

For further information: Walmart Canada Contact: Kevin Groh, Director,
Corporate Affairs, (905) 821-2111 ext. 8012; Stuart Olson Contact: Paul
Polson, Vice President, Stuart Olson Constructors Inc, (403) 520-6565


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