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2002-09-01
Gilbert. AZ. The Wal-Mart Gorilla is Back.

On February 18, 1999, Newsflash reported that Wal-Mart was scrapping its plans to build a supercenter in Gilbert, Arizona at the corner of Lindsay and Wagner streets. At the time, one Town Councilor declared the pull out "a victory for the taxpayers against a 900 pound gorilla." Now, the gorilla is back. Here's a report from sprawl-busters in Gilbert: "Wal-Mart recently held a "voluntary town meeting" to discuss it's preparations to file an application to build a 184,800 square foot Superstore at the South-East corner of Gilbert and Warner Roads. This property is directly adjacent to a residential area and two elementary schools. Wal-Mart is proposing a 22 acre, 855 parking space site. Estimated traffic is 8000 cars and 25 to 30 tractor trailers per day. That is approximately 3 million cars and 11,000 tractor trailers per year. The proposed site will have 4 entrances. Two entrances off of a small and as of yet unbuilt street, and two entrances off of a residental street. Looking at current plans, it appears that tractor trailer access will only be available through entrance off the residental street. No direct access to the major roads is proposed.Resident turn-out for the town meeting was low. Residents blamed poor mail notification and lack of effort to notify residents on the part of Wal-Mart's hired legal firm. The turn out that arrived was predominantly in opposition to the building of a Wal-Mart. The writer of this summary only found out about the meeting 3 hours prior due to a flyer being taped to a community mailbox. This is Wal-Mart's third attempt to build a store in the town of Gilbert. Wal-Mart's last application to build at a site less than one mile away from the currently proposed site was denied."

What you can do: Wal-Mart will often scout out three or four locations in a given area, and proceed to apply for site #1, and if that fails, they will move down to site #2. The hope is that local opposition will eventually tire out, or vary from neighborhood to neighborhood, and eventually the community will give way. For earlier stories on Gilbert, search Newsflash by the town's name.










 
 
"Norman has become the guru of the anti-Wal-Mart movement" ~ 60 Minutes

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