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1998-09-23
Tijeras, New Mexico. No H2O, No Sewer for Wal-Mart

In August of 1997, the Village Council in the small rural community of Tijeras, NM began hearings on a proposed 155,000 s.f. Wal-Mart supercenter just to the east of Albuquerque. There are already 6 Wal-Mart's within 30 miles of this project. Community opposition was vigorous, and sustained. Now, more than a year after Wal-Mart tried to get in, sprawl-busters in the East Mountain area report that the project has literally come up dry. The Tijeras Village Council recently passed a new zoning ordinance that restricts the size of buildings to 50,000 s.f., modeled on the statute enacted in Lake Placid, New York. In addition, the State Engineer's office has recommended denying the project the old water rights associated with the property, leaving Wal-Mart without water. Third, the Mayor of Albuquerque, Jim Baca, has indicated that as long as he is Mayor he will not allow Wal-Mart to hook up to his city's sewer system. That leaves Wal-Mart with 450,000 gallons of effluent a day and nowhere to put it. All of these factors are plugging up Wal-Mart's efforts to sprawl over Tijeras, and while the company may have hoped for a speedy review process, the superstore appears to be in the middle of a super-controversy in New Mexico. The 1990 population of Tijeras, by the way, was 319 people, and the closest Wal-Mart is only 8.2 miles away. Perhaps this project belongs in the sewer.

What you can do: The East Mountain Legal Defense Fund, which is spearheading the effort to block Wal-Mart in Tijeras, has a continuing need for funds. For more information about how you can help, contact Kathy McCoy at: emldf@swcp.com










 
 
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