Tuesday, February 8, 2011

No Surprises at ANC 4C Meeting

ANC 4C commissioners held a public meeting with developer Foulger Pratt and representatives from WalMart. This is the first time WalMart has met with residents in Ward Four, and it was attended by about 75 residents.

Foulger Pratt presented the same images and plans as several months ago at an ANC 4B meeting, signaling that the plans haven't changed. The Foulger Pratt representative spent much of the time highlighting how the architectural merits and aesthetic value of the big box store will add to the neighborhood. His repeated emphasis on community involvement was patronizing at best, as over 800 Ward Four residents have signed onto a petition to Foulger Pratt demanding that no Wal Mart be built. These community concerns have not come into play in Foulger Pratt's efforts to this point.

WalMart's community representative listed many benefits that it would commit to verbally but not in writing, including the hiring of ex offenders, not selling guns or alcohol, and limited hours of operation and truck delivery. For a business known for snarling urban traffic and creating jobs with unaffordable health care plans and poverty wages, these claims were the hardest to believe for many Ward Four residents present.

Updates on W4T meetings with At-Large rep Sekou Biddle and Office of Planning on the way!

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