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2014-08-11
Wheat Ridge, CO. Neighbors Have "A Better Vision" Than Another Wal-Mart

Wheat Ridge, Colorado is a community of roughly 30,500 people, an inner ring suburb of Denver. The community on paper looks like a progressive land use community. The city created a non-profit called Wheat Ridge 2020, whose mission is to keep the city "a vibrant and sustainable community."

So how can it be that there are 30 Wal-Mart stores within 15 miles of Wheat Ridge, including a Wal-Mart store on Youngfield street right in Wheat Ridge? There is nothing "sustainable" about big box predators like Wal-Mart.

This past week several residents in Wheat Ridge reached out to Sprawl-Busters to seek help in stopping a proposed Neighborhood Market at 38th and Wadsworth. "This is in direct competition with existing local businesses and jeopardizes the 'Main Street' that is happening on 38th Ave directly across the street," one resident wrote. "This endangers small, local businesses that have recently opened and many businesses that have been staples of our community for generations." These people explain that they are not at all anti-development. "We have a better vision for Wheat Ridge and Wal-Mart is not included in that vision."

Citizens in Wheat Ridge have set up a Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/groups/1410534065889038/ and have started a petition to let Wal-Mart know they are not welcome at this location.

Another homeowner in Wheat Ridge wrote: "I represent a growing number of people who do not want a Wal-Mart at 38th and Wadsworth. The local grocers union is now on board, and we have yard signs, a Facebook page, and a Website (nowalmart38th.com). We do not know how far along the developer (mq Partners) is in the process, but the city hopes to have everything in place by December. The city of Wheat Ridge is operating without any knowledge of local residents and have, I think, approved the developers initial application. They have secured Federal funding to clean up part of the site and plan to deed it directly to the developer afterward."


Citizens are now looking for a land use attorney to represent them. Readers are urged to all Wheat Ridge Mayor Joyce Jay at 303-235-2800 with the following message:

"Dear Mayor Jay,

As a professional photographer, you know that a picture can be worth 1,000 words. How many words will it take to describe how one more Wal-Mart will damage the "vibrant and sustainable" community that your city says it wants to be? When you think of photo of Wheat Ridge 2020, do you one big box store after another?

Your small community is already saturated with 30 Wal-Mart stores within 15 miles. If people in Wheat Ridge crave access to cheap Chinese imports, they have, as your city says, "short commutes" in any direction to find one.

Wheat Ridge 2020 was created to "encourage appropriate development." This latest Wal-Mart proposal--with a building the size of an acre---makes no sense. If you approve this Wal-Mart, you might want to change the city's name to Wal-Ridge.

Listen to your voters. They know this is not an appropriate location for another Wal-Mart, and that the scale of this 'Neighborhood Market' is not neighborly. You can't buy small town quality of life on any Wal-Mart shelf, Mayor Jay. But once they take it from you, you can't buy it back at any price.

And please, don't use federal money to clean up the site. The Walton family does not need any more taxpayer subsidies. If they want to build another redundant store to take sales from existing merchants, make them do it without public welfare."

What you can do: Citizens are now looking for a land use attorney to represent them.

Readers are urged to call Wheat Ridge Mayor Joyce Jay at 303-235-2800 with the following message:

"Dear Mayor Jay,

As a professional photographer, you know that a picture can be worth 1,000 words. How many words will it take to describe how one more Wal-Mart will damage the "vibrant and sustainable" community that your city says it wants to maintain? When you think of a photo of Wheat Ridge 2020, do you picture one big box store after another?

Your small community is already saturated with 30 Wal-Mart stores within 15 miles. If people in Wheat Ridge crave access to cheap Chinese imports, they have, as your city says, "short commutes" in any direction to find one.

Wheat Ridge 2020 was created to "encourage appropriate development." This latest Wal-Mart proposal--with a building the size of an acre---is not appropriate in scale. If you approve this Wal-Mart, you might want to change the city's name to Wal-Ridge.

Listen to your voters. They know this is not an appropriate location for another Wal-Mart, and that the scale of this 'Neighborhood Market' is not neighborly. You can't buy small town quality of life on any Wal-Mart shelf, Mayor Jay. But once they take it from you, you can't buy it back at any price.

And please, don't use federal money to clean up the site. The Walton family does not need any more taxpayer subsidies. If they want to build another redundant store to take sales from existing merchants, make them do it without public welfare."










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

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