HARKER HEIGHTS — In the three months since Wal-Mart Stores Inc. announced that a new Sam’s Club would be built in Harker Heights, little activity occurred at the 17-acre site on the corner of West Central Texas Expressway and Memory Lane.

But that changed last week when an office trailer and piles of dirt showed up, indicating the start of the 136,000-square-foot building project.

On Jan. 14, the city issued a building permit to Mycon General Contractors of McKinney for the $7.5 million project, said Margaret Cleghorn, Heights building official secretary.

Mycon, in business since 1987, has built multiple stores for Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Kroger, LA Fitness and Main Event, as well as an H-E-B in Mission and several shopping centers in Oklahoma and Texas, according to the Mycon website.

Attempts to reach Mycon for comment on the project were unsuccessful.

Upon completion, the new Sam’s Club will create 175 local full- and part-time jobs, with a hiring center going up about four months before the store opens in late fall, said Kelli Duhr, Wal-Mart public affairs director.

City Manager Steve Carpenter believes Harker Heights is the perfect location for the new store, with more than 200,000 people living between Copperas Cove and Belton.

“I think it will really do well there,” he said in October. “I think it will be important to us because it will bring a lot of people to the area who will not only shop at Sam’s but might go to other stores as well.”

Harker Heights Chamber of Commerce membership director Gina Pence echoed that sentiment on behalf of the chamber, adding that she is already connected with the community relations manager at Sam’s Club in Temple.

“They are very excited about coming into the area and being part of the community,” Pence said.

“The fact that they’re going to keep our residents and commercial (customers) here in the city of Heights is wonderful. Plus, they’re bringing lots of jobs in.”

Contact Kristi Johnson at kristij@kdhnews.com or (254) 501-7548

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