(Washington Times) If the sign on the building didn’t say Wal-Mart, you might mistake it for Bloomingdale’s.

The glass atrium, escalators from a multilevel parking deck and surrounding pedestrian mall seem strangely out of character for the world’s largest retailer, as is the location in a new downtown anchored by the big-box giant.

Yes, that’s right: There is a town in Virginia that bulldozed the remains of its decades-old downtown shopping district and put up a Wal-Mart— and it has proved to be a big hit in bringing people back to the town’s long-struggling core. It even has sparked an unlikely holiday buying rush this year.

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