By Nicole Shine/Garden Grove Journal
A new Walmart is in the works, hotels are full and revenues are up, said Garden Grove’s newly-elected but veteran mayor at the annual State of the City address Tuesday.
Sounding an optimistic note, Mayor Bruce Broadwater reflected on the past and looked to the future before a packed crowd at the Crowne Plaza Resort on Harbor Boulevard near Chapman Avenue.
“As we all know, we’ve been on a long, bumpy and unpredictable road over the last few years,” Broadwater said. “I truly believe we can finally see a turn in the road just up ahead.”
He touted an upswing in sales and property tax revenues and record sales at some of the auto dealerships along Garden Grove Boulevard.
The mayor also cited the arrival last year of retailers like Fresh & Easy, Fresh Choice Marketplace and Walmart Neighborhood Market.
He then surprised the crowd by spilling the little-known news that a full-size Walmart is coming. It’s expected to move into the old Costco site at Gilbert Street and Chapman Avenue in the Promenade Center by midyear.
Broadwater also noted that the end of redevelopment last year failed to derail the city’s hotel expansion plans.
Instead, the city pushed forward with three proposed hotels on Harbor Boulevard, which are expected to bring in a combined $14.1 million in revenues once completed.
One, the Great Wolf Lodge, a water park and 600-room hotel, will break ground this year. The 11-acre project is expected to create 1,000 jobs. Also breaking ground is the Brookhurst Triangle, a mixed-use project north of Garden Grove Boulevard.
But development wasn’t Broadwater’s sole focus. Instead, his talk shifted to his three grandchildren and the importance of community.
“And for a personal goal, I’d like to see plans for a new community gymnasium start to take shape,” he said.
Similar to the Garden Grove Park Sports Complex, the new facility would play host to local sports and swimming.
Along the same vein, Broadwater celebrated the 50-year anniversary of the Altantis Play Center and the 15-year anniversary of the Garden Grove Community Foundation.
The State of the City address, the mayor’s 11th, was co-sponsored by the Garden Grove Chamber of Commerce.
Contact the writer on Twitter at @nicolekshine.