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2003-02-16
Lorain, OH. Residents Gear Up to Fend Off Wal-Mart Supercenter

Several residents of Lorain, Ohio contacted Sprawl-Busters about a Wal-Mart supercenter proposed for their town. "Wal-Mart is trying to bully our community and squeeze their gigantic store into an area of land that doesn't need it," one resident wrote. "The roads are already over-crowded and unsafe, and many community members are strongly opposed. Our next council meeting is February 24, and this will be an open forum for the community to speak. The following week will be the council meeting where council members will vote whether or not to rezone that land to commercial.  If that happens Wal-Mart will be up and running by September.  There are 12 council members and right now is seems as if this is going to come down to the last vote. We have organized 2 community meetings and are going to have a 3rd meeting Saturday.  We are preparing for the coucil meeting on February 24.  We also have met with an attorney that has fought this type of battle before. About a quarter mile down the road is Super-Kmart's 3rd most income producing store in the nation.  Within half mile of the proposed Wal-Mart is a Drug Mart, Walgreens, Rite Aide, and Giant Eagle.  If Wal-Mart is built on Cooper Foster Park Road, it will ruin many people's lives." Another resident added: "The developers are asking for street widening and utilities upgrades in a community that recently required wage and benefit freezes from its employees and is requesting an income tax increase. We are hugely "overretailed" at present and Wal-Mart would certainly spell the demise of the nearby Super K-Mart. In addition, the Wal-Mart entrance would be located at the same intersection as a union grocer's entrance; thereby spelling doom to a responsible employer. Immediate area residents are adamantly opposed. Local city council members seem to favor the project based on the promise of bringing " jobs to the community"

What you can do: A study published by the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency, which includes Lorain County, recently concluded that retail development "has often led to substantial traffic congestion, the need for costly infrastructure improvements, and degradation of land, air, and water quality." The study found that the seven county region is saturated in the convenience and shopping goods categories by more than 6 million square feet. The study found: "Communities planning to use retail development as the focus of an economic development strategy would be better served by trying to sustain and or attract industrial and office-based business." For the executive summary of the Northeast Ohio Retail Analysis, contact info@sprawl-busters.com










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

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