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NEWS
By Bill Kisliuk, bill.kisliuk@latimes.com | July 5, 2011
Walmart, the largest retailer in the world, has set its sights on Burbank. Walmart Real Estate Business Trust last month acquired a 12-acre property that houses the Great Indoors store at the Empire Center, which is already home to a Target store and other “big box” retailers. Sears, which owns Great Indoors, plans to shutter the store in August, according to a company spokeswoman. The property is adjacent to the Empire Center, but is owned and managed separately. Steven Restivo, a Walmart spokesman, declined to say whether the company plans a supercenter, which typically operates 24 hours a day and employs roughly 350 people, or a smaller store.
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NEWS
By Mark Kellam, mark.kellam@latimes.com | December 27, 2011
A future Walmart in Burbank dominated the public discourse in 2011, sparking protests at City Hall, new Facebook pages opposing the retailer's move into the city and divided opinions among residents - and it's only just begun. Walmart is scheduled to open near the Empire Center in early 2013, according to spokesman Steve Restivo.  The mega-retailer's sometimes rocky road to Burbank started in early July when news broke that the Walmart Real Estate Business Trust had purchased 12 acres where a 120,000-square-foot Great Indoors store was located.
NEWS
September 4, 2012
Instead of putting in another department store, i.e. Walmart, in the Empire Center, perhaps Burbank should look into adding a Whole Foods market. The closest ones are in Glendale and Sherman Oaks, and I think it would be a good choice for Burbank. Not only would it be a place people could shop for organic foods, but would also provide jobs. Just something for the City Council and the owner of the Empire Center to consider. Anjanette McFarlin Burbank
THE818NOW
June 23, 2012
Walmart will pay for the city of Burbank's defense against a lawsuit filed in an effort to block or at least stall the world's largest retailer's plans to open a store near the Empire Center. The City Council has decided to defend the lawsuit, which alleges certain street improvements must be made before the Walmart can open, council members hired the Costa Mesa-based law firm of Rutan and Tucker during a recent closed-session meeting. Later, City Atty. Amy Albano announced the decision during an open meeting and said Walmart would pay for the defense costs.
NEWS
September 25, 2012
In reply to the letter to the editor regarding the traffic issue and Walmart (“ Walmart traffic issue is a red herring ,” Sept. 19), it's probably true that the traffic problem is a non-issue. I really wonder, though, do we need another superstore in the Empire Center? We already have a Target and a Costco, and a Kmart not that far away. Perhaps Whole Foods is not the answer, but anything but a Walmart, please. The type of people the store attracts, and the crime, would be bad for the rest of the businesses in that area.
NEWS
July 8, 2011
The reaction to this week on Facebook to news that Walmart bought the Great Indoors site adjacent to the Empire Center was swift and firm: No thank you. It appears that the main reason — outside the usual opposition to the company’s business ethos — was fears over the impact a behemoth retailer would have on the already congested portal to the Empire Center. One commenter summed it up in his post: “We don't need more out-of-towners coming to our city and causing more traffic and taking up parking spots, especially at times like holidays.” Such is the curse of Walmart — it’s a major tax-revenue generator, but with it comes all the trappings of a high-volume store: crowds, traffic, rough competition for small businesses.
THE818NOW
By Mark Kellam, mark.kellam@latimes.com | July 24, 2012
The legal battle to stop a Walmart from opening in Burbank is scheduled to go to trial on Aug. 17, when a judge will consider an injunction seeking to halt renovations at the new store site. The three Burbank residents seeking to stop the renovation of the former Great Indoors site - Shanna Ingalsbee, Katherine Olson and Yvette Ziraldo - have filed a lawsuit demanding that more be done to study the economic and environmental impact of the world's largest retailer moving in next to the Empire Center.
NEWS
June 2, 2012
I think Walmart will be a fantastic addition to the Empire Center, and to Burbank as a whole. The two letters published in the Saturday edition of the Leader (Mailbag, May 19), one expressing worries about the City Council selling out, and one fearful Walmart will change the very fabric of Burbank, are not concerns residents should use to prevent Walmart from becoming part of Burbank. I don't think the City Council has “sold out” residents by allowing Walmart to set up shop in the Empire Center.
THE818NOW
February 21, 2012
Opponents of a planned Walmart in Burbank drew upon the strength of unions Tuesday night to give the noisiest local protest yet to the mega-retailer. More than 100 people, bolstered by the organized support of labor unions, swarmed outside Burbank City Hall before the City Council meeting, using a loudspeaker to sound off on the idea of a Walmart next to the Empire Center. In a show of how the labor movement has latched on to the cause, about 30 members of Warehouse Workers United - which advocates for better working conditions in Inland Empire distribution centers - marched down Olive Avenue to the beat of a snare drum to join the protest.
THE818NOW
August 15, 2013
Police arrested five people at Tuesday's car enthusiast “flash mob,” which drew more than 3,000 people - and roughly 1,000 vehicles - to the Empire Center in Burbank. Three were arrested, cited and released for possessing marijuana, and two for engaging in speeding contests, said Burbank Police Sgt. Darin Ryburn. The vehicles belonging to the pair cited for racing were impounded. Additionally, 74 citations were issued for equipment violations and other infractions, and five parking tickets were issued, Ryburn said.
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