SHEPHERDSVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Red tape and the Great Recession delayed Walmart coming to Bullitt County -- but that is about to change.
Bullitt County has a population of more than 74,000, according to the 2010 census. With that many people, you would think a Walmart would already be somewhere in the county.
But not just yet.
However, site preparation is underway for what will be Bullitt County's first Wal-Mart to be built just across the street from the Shepherdsville City Hall.
"They are putting up steel fences, they have moved a construction office trailer in, we see construction equipment over there, so that is an exacting sign," Shepherdsville Mayor Scott Ellis told WDRB News on Monday.
The Walmart will be built on Conestoga Parkway, within sight of busy I-65.
For Shepherdsville residents, the closest Wal-Mart is now about a 15-minute drive into southern Jefferson County at Preston Highway and Mudd Lane.
Mayor Ellis says his city has been working to get a Walmart built in his town for more than two years.
He says the time is right. "Shepherdsville now has more than 11,000 residents. We see more than 96,000 cars pass by on I-65, 32,000 cars travel Highway 44, so it is the perfect place to put a Wal-Mart now."
The project has been slow in coming because additional permits were needed when Walmart decided to add a fuel station to the project.
The mayor says it will look like a typical modern Walmart super center with more than 180,000 square feet of space and plenty of room for a grocery store, which will give the Kroger down the street some competition.
Walmart's arrival in Bullitt County is expected to be a catalyst for more businesses to locate at the site.
"I've already been contacted by several restaurants wanting to come now since Walmart is coming," said Mayor Ellis. "We can't release that information now, but we will be announcing those in the coming weeks."
Walmart tells WDRB News that the store will have about 300 employees, both part- and full-time.
It's scheduled to open in the spring of next year.
The giant retailer says about three months before the store's opening it will open a hiring center near the site of its new super center.