READINGTON, NJ – Walmart plans to close its store on Route 22 here, a decision that follows “a careful and thoughtful review process,” said company spokesperson Phillip Keene.

The Route 22 store opened 14 years ago and the closing is “in no way a reflection” of its employees’ “hard work and customer service.”

The decision was based on a number of factors, Keene said, “including financial performance and strategic alignment with long-term plans.”

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The company plans to close the store on Feb. 28 and its pharmacy will be open to customers through Feb. 21.

“Our pharmacy staff will work with customers to transfer prescriptions to another convenient location as soon as possible,” Keene said.

The company hopes that the majority of the associates at the Readington store will want to continue their Walmart career by transferring to another nearby store.

 “The decision to close our Readington (Branchburg) store is not an easy one, but, as a company, we are committed to continuing our growth and investment in New Jersey,” Keene said.

Walmart operates more than 70 stores and Sam’s Clubs in New Jersey and over the last year has created new jobs and invested millions across the state by opening a store, remodeling 12 locations, launching Pickup Towers and opening a new training academy for New Jersey associates.