MIDLAND, TX (KWES) - The Walmart location on Midland Drive will re-open by late October or early November, company representatives announced Wednesday.
"We are now ready to officially begin the hiring process," company spokesperson Anne Hatfield said in a statement to NewsWest 9. "This includes communicating with associates that have transferred to surrounding area stores and encouraging all others interested in exploring employment opportunities with Walmart to also apply. We thank the community for their patience as we work through these issues and are excited to give our customers a store that better reflects the shopping experience we are providing today in other markets across the country."
The northside store closed in mid-April to address "sagging, damaged and obstructed sanitary plumbing lines throughout the building," according to Walmart representatives.
Employees said they weren't informed of the closure until the day before the Midland Drive location shut its doors. Some of the 400 northside employees were offered the option of transferring to a different Walmart store, while the rest were given two months' salary and forced to find other jobs.
"We knew absolutely nothing," former employee Brandy Logan told NewsWest 9 in April. "It was horrible how they handled this... Everyone's like, 'Well, you get a two month paid vacation. What are you complaining about?' But I have to support my family for more than two months.'"
The mother of two worked as a cashier at the Midland Drive Walmart for approximately six months before they closed. Logan said she "nearly had a breakdown" and had to restrain herself from "bursting into tears" as she finished her shift at the cash register, not knowing if it would be her last one with Walmart.
Shoppers also complained about the unexpected closure and said it resulted in crowding at the southside location on Rankin Highway.
"It's a relief that [the Midland Drive Walmart] is reopening," said shopper Damon Ewing. "It's been really inconvenient having to go to the southside [store]... The parking lot is definitely always full. Let's just say everybody parks in the back [and] you better bring some tennis shoes."