Walmart plans to break ground early next year on a huge distribution center in Mankato.
The 420,000-square-foot center will handle perishable groceries. The project is expected to add millions of dollars to the city's tax base, as well as some 300 jobs.
"They are very liveable, good-paying jobs. Both management, technical, maintenance folks that work in these centers," said Mankato City Manager Pat Hentges. "And obviously the transportation people, along with the general warehouse staff."
Construction is expected to start next year and be completed in 2015. The city says Walmart will pay for road, sewer, water and other improvements related to the project.
"We don't have a distribution center currently in Minnesota," said Delia Garcia, Walmart spokeswoman. "This offers us an opportunity to serve our growing customer base in Minnesota better, as well as regionally in the upper Midwest."
The retailer has 78 Walmart and Sam's Club stores in Minnesota and expects to open two more stores in the state this year. Walmart has been looking at building the distribution center in Mankato since 2005.