WARREN (WWJ) – Warren Mayor Jim Fouts is blasting discount retailer Walmart, saying it is holding the city back. Fouts says Walmart is squelching plans to fix up the retailer’s old location at the Tech Center at 12 Mile and Van Dyke.

“I can’t say the name of the developer because, right now, he prefers not to be mentioned,” Fouts said. “But he wants to put a state-of-the-art facility there and Walmart will not agree to that.”

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Many stores moved out of the Tech Center when Walmart left for a new locations two miles north.  Fouts said it’s now an eyesore that is discouraging new development all around the area.

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He said Walmart doesn’t want the competition.

“They basically have deserted the city of Warren and, rather than move out, they’re just paying their rent,” Fouts said. “We’re working on some legal options, but they have the right to stay their til, I don’t know, 2018 or 2020, because they have a lease there.”

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Hear more from Mayor Fouts as he joins other Metro Detroit mayors on breakfast panel hosted by WWJ Thursday morning at the Troy Marriott.  Learn more about this free event and register at this link.