Wal-Mart has set its sights on Summerville for its first small-format store in the tri-county area.
The retailer has submitted plans to Dorchester County to build one of its Neighborhood Market locations at Dorchester and Bacons Bridge roads.
After building an empire on the concept of the supercenter, where customers can purchase everything from a rib-eye steak to a wireless phone, Wal-Mart recently has turned its attention to the opposite end of the spectrum with its own version of a convenience store.
The Neighborhood Market, which is typically about a quarter of the size of a Wal-Mart Supercenter, sells traditional convenience store goods with an expanded selection of grocery items and prepared foods.
The retail giant has had a few small-format stores in its fleet for several years, but Wal-Mart last year announced that it would ramp up efforts to spread the convenience stores nationwide.
So far this year, three Neighborhood Markets have opened in South Carolina, in Greenville, Greer and Myrtle Beach, and two more are reportedly on the way to Fort Mill and Rock Hill.
Carolina Ale House will open Monday in Summerville. The craft beer pub and restaurant chain based in Raleigh is opening at 191 Sigma Drive in Nexton, MeadWestvaco's new mixed-use development near U.S. Highway 17A and Interstate 26.
Through Tuesday, the restaurant will donate 10 percent of food sales to Children in Crisis, an organization in Dorchester County that provides social services to children in need. The restaurant will be open for lunch and dinner from 11 a.m.-2 a.m. daily.
Carolina Ale House is also opening a rooftop bar at Calhoun and King streets in the former Millennium Music building. Lea Cooper, spokeswoman for the company, has said that location could be open this fall.
Black Bean Co. closed its West Ashley location on Sunday. The locally owned restaurant, one of three in the Charleston area, had several years left on its lease at 1529 Savannah Highway when Hendrick Automotive Group took over the surrounding former Kmart property it purchased in February, according to dealership officials at the time of the transaction.
Charlotte-based Hendrick plans to redevelop the former Kmart parking lot into a 14,388-square-foot Hendrick Hyundai dealership and a collision-repair center.
It's unclear whether the redevelopment played a role in the restaurant's closure. Owners of Black Bean Co. did not respond to requests for comment Wednesday.
The restaurant posted this announcement to its Facebook page Sunday: "We're excited about the redevelopment taking place for Rick Hendrick and wish them all the best. We will keep everyone posted on any future endeavors west of the Ashley."
Its other local restaurants are in downtown Charleston at 429 King St. and on James Island at 869 Folly Road.
Reach Abigail Darlington at 937-5906 and follow her on Twitter @A_Big_Gail
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