Wal-Mart feud still simmering

As is to be expected with highly controversial retail store expansions, the store representatives and the store’s neighbors had two totally different perceptions of how the business — and its proposed jump in square footage — affects the community.

The Bethel Road Wal-Mart, which plans to nearly double its net sales floor area, has a local reputation for being noisy, overly lit and laissez-faire about the impact it has on its residential neighbors to the east. The Wal-Mart representatives claim the residents’ complaints are highly exaggerated and maintain the addition of 105,000 square feet of grocery space to its already 103,000 retail space will have minimal impact on its immediate surroundings.

And the two sides said as much, in a five-hour public hearing held Thursday before the Kitsap County Hearing Examiner.

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