Wal-Mart Stores Inc.’s vision of building its first New York City store at a site in East New York, Brooklyn, came to an end Friday. Related Cos. struck a deal with Shop-Rite Supermarkets, not the controversial big-box chain, to anchor its Gateway II mall.
Neither Related nor Wal-Mart ever officially confirmed that it had been in talks about building at the Gateway II site. Related had spoken to many possible tenants about anchoring the project. And Wal-Mart would only say that it was committed to opening stores in all major cities, including New York City.
But labor-backed opposition to the nonunion chain intensified last year when sources said Wal-Mart was eyeing East New York, Brooklyn, as a possible location. Local lawmakers have also sought to make the city an inhospitable environment for a Walmart store, promising to investigate the chain’s labor practices after news broke that its Mexican subsidiary had been involved in a vast bribery scheme.