Tysons Corner Walmart opens amid wage battle in D.C.

VIENNA, Va. (WJLA) -- All the activity outside the grand opening of a new Walmart in Tysons Corner gives a good indication of the excitement inside.

Virginia resident Carol Selario’s first impression of the store – all 79,000 feet of it – is one shared by many.

"I love it," she laughs. "I didn't realize it was going to be this big -- I think Tysons has everything under the sun except regular stuff."

The opening of the Walmart on Cornerside Boulevard comes as the retail giant is fighting a battle in D.C.

The D.C. Council approved in July the Large Retailer Accountability Act, which would require Walmart and other big retailers to pay $12.50 an hour for minimum wage while others stores pay $8.50.

Minimum wage across Virginia, Walmart included, is $7.50. Average wage here is $12.40.

"I think people see what we have to offer the community," says one Tysons Walmart employee. "We have convenient and affordable shopping options, and we have good paying jobs."

While Tysons has a new metro line almost ready to go, it also has plenty of traffic. And nearby residents are hoping that Walmart doesn’t make it any worse.

But there is still one lingering question that comes with practically any new Walmart: Will it eventually force small businesses out?