Walmart in Midtown Miami: Opponents Take Their Appeal to City Hall Tonight

Categories: News

walmartlogo.jpg
Tonight, critics will once again outline their opposition to Walmart's midtown Miami plans. And while the Planning, Zoning, and Appeals Board meeting won't be the last time the issue arises, it will likely be opponents' best shot to derail the big-box store's development project.

It was the same board that delivered a resounding 9-0 vote against Walmart's plans last year -- a decision later overturned by planning director Francisco Garcia.

A second rejection by the board would put pressure on city commissioners to do the same, whereas a reversal would give politicians political cover to approve the controversial project.

See also: City Approves Walmart's Plans for Midtown, Opponents Pledge to Appeal

Opponents of the plan argue that Walmart's proposal violates numerous zoning laws and that the city would be bending the rules to allow the megastore into the up-and-coming neighborhood.

Walmart, meanwhile, insists that it is bringing hundreds of short- and long-term jobs to the area and that it has the backing of local residents.

Garcia, the planning director, gave the 203,000-square-foot building the green light in August when he approved Walmart's building plans, asking only that the company file final construction plans, replace uprooted trees, and ban delivery trucks from entering busy Midtown Boulevard from NE 31st Street.

Walmart has already made some concessions to critics, including promising to cover exterior walls and allow other stores along the street.
But critics -- chief among them mortgage broker Grant Stern -- argue that even with the changes, the new Walmart will move the neighborhood away from a dense, urban, and residential space and instead transform it into a suburban wasteland of shopping carts and receipts for $3.99 spandex jeggings blowing back and forth like tumbleweeds.

"If you've got any desire to oppose Walmart's defenestration of midtown -- this is the time to make your voice heard," Stern wrote recently in an online petition against the project. "All we need to do is fight -- there is a strong chance that our appeal will be successful."

Tonight's Planning, Zoning and Appeals Board meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. at Miami City Hall.

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59 comments
avoidcorruption
avoidcorruption

Wynwood and Midtown Miami will be traffic nightmares when Walmart starts construction.  N. Miami Avenue and NE 29th Street will be a parking lot.  The City was pressured to approve the illegal application.

FWACATA
FWACATA

If people could just stop being so petty and greedy to see how bad Walmart is to ANY local economy, you'll see in the long run all they do suck the life out of a neighborhood. You shouldn't be catering to the lowest common denominator because some folks want to get things cheap and some multi-national corporation comes in and gives a couple of shitty jobs. That does NOTHING FOR YOU. Shop locally and try to give to your community. Thing over the horizon with some common sense.  

Walmart goes into an area and causes small businesses to close. They force their suppliers to take jobs overseas to meet walmart demand for low prices. They pay their workers poorly causing the taxpayer to have to subsidize them with public assistance. Health insurance that they offer is not affordable to their workers

1 company proves my point: Rubbermaid. Walmart wanted an unrealistic price from them, and caused them to lose money, close a plant, and lose roughly 1000 jobs. Want another example? Tompson electronics that was forced to go bankrupt due to foreign labour competition. A n American company that does not care for the well-being of its home country.

Wal Mart corporation caused inhumane employment in China and Indonesia women were mainly victims. They had no time-off and didn't get their wages as they had to get. Their salaries are cut off in many reasons. So they are doing like a slave. Even though consumers are getting a good quality products with a very cheap price, they are involved in inhumane works indirectly.

Many of Wal-Mart's sales are brought from forceful buying of goods from the- market. They force socks to be sold at such price for such quantity that harms the income of potential sellers. Yes people may say that Wal-Mart is good for the low income families that want good quality at reasonable prices but at the risk of other companies going bankrupt or shipping jobs to other countries because Wal-Mart doesn't wanna pay the certain amount for a certain amount of goods. This company's way of dealing their goods is horrible and the government needs to step in and do something about this. Or a change of mind for their corporate side

You think they give two shit about midtown? About you? They only one they care is this Francisco Garcia for trying to push this bullshit through. THINK, and SAY NO TO WALMART

Patricia L Watt
Patricia L Watt

Trying to get over the reputation of "crack city" a place where no one cares if they neglect a child or dog. To shop at WALL-MART. There is no gentrification. Only ass holes I have had to live next to for decades.

Patricia L Watt
Patricia L Watt

Don't go away mad, just go away. Sorry, just getting over the decade of crime to finally be able to breath. Still cant ware jewelry or carry a iPhone with out being murdered. Don't like it? Well that's just the way it is. Read the paper. Ten years ago we had to beat assholes just to walk down the street. Now the left overs want a fucking Wall Mart. Piss Off.

Patricia L Watt
Patricia L Watt

We are not "new" you are. This is something from the real people who have lived here for decades,and generations, before being overrun by new immigrants. And F#$% you. Hoping you all would just go away. Riding it out. Go shop at Wall Mart some where else. I know there's plenty of them, just go there. You ruin everything. Where ever you go, turns to shit. Just go away and take your wall-mart with you. Build a Wall fucking Mart in the "new" Miami shores.

Patricia L Watt
Patricia L Watt

Traffic is already Hell, for people who don't live here to drive in to buy cheap socks & large sized bras! omg. I will never shop at a Wall-mart. Not to mention what it will do to "tar'gets already! Wall Mart is a aggressive monster we do not want here. And being so close to what is supposed to be "the design district" makes me sick. Along with the big designers pushing out the local business, is more than angering! Cartier with in 3 blocks of a Wall-Mart mall is sickening. City planners get your head out of your ass.

Rabeeta
Rabeeta

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Vita Vitalis
Vita Vitalis

Why are so many people defending Walmart??? Walmart is a horrible corporation. Midtown is tiny they should build it in the hood if they must not midtown!!!

Jen Die
Jen Die

Well if the residents of midtown wish to not have one, hope they succeed in stopping walmart...there are too many of them anyway.

Grant Stern
Grant Stern

Wal-Mart isn't following local laws that govern how a big box store can be placed in Midtown. Their obvious disregard for the laws our elected officials created in this district is appalling. No business. or construction project should be allowed variances without going through the public hearing process, as specified in those laws. Wal-Mart should be no exception, hence our position that Miami's PZAB and commission must end this charade today and revoke Wal-Mart's architectural permit immediately.

JKasdin
JKasdin

Midtown is not a small business neighborhood.  It is populated with a collection of big-box and mid-box retailers, and national and international brands.  The area was a former rail yard, and was always intended as a retail development for big-box and mid-box anchors with smaller stores around it.  Furthermore, the existence of national brands, like Five Guys, doesn't seem to be having any impact on local brands like Sakaya.

Midtown is not part of Wynwood, it isn't part of the Design District, and where the Walmart is being placed has no pedestrian connection to the surrounding neighborhood, including the rest of Midtown, hence the need for an anchor like Walmart to draw customers.

All of this bellyaching is nonsensical to the extreme, Walmart will have no adverse impact on the surrounding community.

Chard Beauregarde
Chard Beauregarde

Can't believe so many people here are drinking the Walmart Kool-Aid. No one cares that they're chumping off their own employees by forcing them to seek Welfare and Medicaid while raking in the big bucks for themselves? You want to get inexpensive food? Go to the bodegitas and support local businesses that get the same freshness that these big boxes get. Clip coupons, hit up Publix BOGO's, don't support this monstrosity that wouldn't care if every business around it got snuffed while they hawk their shit wares. Guess that's Miami mentality for ya tho.

Elena Margarita Zapata
Elena Margarita Zapata

ay ppl need to stop being so snobby and drop it, build that shit and then go buy some inexpensive vegetables & make your green healthy juice. This city shouldn't be based on segregation

Miguel Marquez
Miguel Marquez

I find it amusing that none of the opponents are raising hell about the new walmart being built on Flagler and 92ave. Literally 1.5 miles away from the walmart in Doral, and 1.7 miles away from the walmart on coral way. 3 walmarts in a 3 mile radius. That's right, they don't live in that area so it's of no consequence to them. If you're gonna claim walmart in general is bad, then oppose ALL walmarts, not just the one near you.. But I think Jaime summarized the opponents stance perfectly... "It'll attract the wrong people"

Jhon A Cornejo
Jhon A Cornejo

Walmart in Midtown will be awesome! I live on Miami Beach n get tired of driving to Doral or North Miami Beach or Hialeah Gardens. It will be nice to have a Walmart in the heart of Miami.

Cari Garcia
Cari Garcia

Considering that Midtown is completely surrounded by some of the poorest communities in Miami (overtown, little Haiti, Brownsville, wynwood, allapattah etc) I find it absolutely atrocious that these new residents are demanding no Walmart be built, when the families that have lived in this area for decades need a walmart. Not everyone can afford target or the ridiculously overly priced, privately owned boutiques. Gentrification at it's finest.

a.m.ruiz85
a.m.ruiz85

To all the people criticizing the opponents of Walmart in Midtown. First, if you don't live in the area (and I don't mean the few luxury buildings), I mean all the area Wynwood, Design District, Little Haiti, you don't know what we are talking about. But if you ever bothered to go around, you will see countless small businesses all over. All kinds of businesses that would be affected by the competition of Walmart. You say, "then they should lower their prices"? Really? You really believe small business owners can compete with the prices of a mega corporation that gets discounts that are impossible to reach unless you have an empire? I am not saying that people don't deserve to get the best economic prices for a sustainable living, but don't put a monster like that right smack in the middle of a renaissance area for small businesses!!! Even Miami Shores would be a better location, but why put it in Midtown? It's going to kill the opportunities that have been given to people there. Also, it will kill the cultural center it has become. It's not a good location for Walmart, and they are only trying to get in there because of the amount of growth the area has had in the last 5 years. You know why? Because of small businesses!!! Yes, lets kill all their hard work, make the wealthy wealthier. Sometimes I just don't understand how people in this city don't see this. Cheaper is not always better, and it comes at the expense of others--always!

James Eagles
James Eagles

so strip clubs and bars are okay, but no walmart? amazing!

jpeter2
jpeter2

Better yet why not put an Outdoor World right next door to the wal mart.

Jenifer Smith
Jenifer Smith

A walmart is needed in that part of town. I live close to midtown and its a huge inconvience to drive to North Miami or Miami Gardens to go to Walmart. I feel Walmart will be an asset to the area and provide more jobs.

Gabe Yunes
Gabe Yunes

Fuck the hipsters snobs. Let the walmart open. People have right to shop wherever the prices are the lowest. If smaller business want to compete, then lower your damn prices on your products and stop bitching.

Gary McFly
Gary McFly

Whats with these rich Midtown hipsters wanting to move in for a couple of years and suddenly segregate themselves from the working class Allapattah blue color families? Making them drive to Doral for necessities saying a Targét is sufficient if they can afford it.

Joseph F. Carney III
Joseph F. Carney III

Ahhh..my city is so fucked up what difference does it make...go for it ! Its a doomed city anyway..

Andrew Jordan
Andrew Jordan

I find it amusing that most midtown hipsters are probably Obama supporters...yet they don't want poor people in their neighborhood.....hypocritical?

Andrew Jordan
Andrew Jordan

Let the public decide....they will vote with their wallets.

Chard Beauregarde
Chard Beauregarde

Eff Walmart all day and night, mistreating their workers and encouraging them to get Government Aid, can't even pay them a living wage despite making record profits every year. Fuck that place.

Jaime Brunner
Jaime Brunner

We have target! No need for Walmart... Don't ruin the area. It will attract the wrong ppl to an area that is finally thriving

Anthonyvop1
Anthonyvop1 topcommenter

More proof at Liberals hate poor people.

FWACATA
FWACATA

@Patricia L Watt You're a fucking pig. 

miamitrev2
miamitrev2 topcommenter

@Patricia L Watt  

pobrecito bitch

miamitrev2
miamitrev2 topcommenter

@Diana Shapiro  

"It's an eye soar"?    Lol   love it.

a.m.ruiz85
a.m.ruiz85

@Jhon A Cornejo How would you feel about a Walmart in Miami Beach?

a.m.ruiz85
a.m.ruiz85

@Cari Garcia Which makes you wonder why now and not so long ago? And why not in Little Haiti or Brownsville? Investing on building a Walmart would actually improve the living conditions in those areas. It would actually be beneficial. No, they put in the middle of a growing small business community. You are mistaken. Most people in Midtown are not against Walmart, they are against Walmart in an area where small businesses are flourishing. 

shalmont
shalmont

@Cari Garcia Hmm only comment I've read that made sense on this posting.

miamitrev2
miamitrev2 topcommenter

@Chard Beauregarde  

You are so charming and original.   Bet it came you all morning to come up with that  gem of a name didn't it?

a.m.ruiz85
a.m.ruiz85

@Gabe Yunes You obviously know nothing about small business vs corporations economics. Google it.

a.m.ruiz85
a.m.ruiz85

@Gary McFly Then put Walmart in Allapattah. Allapattah is not Midtown, its another area near downtown. And it would actually work out for everyone. Don't put Walmart in the Middle of an Area populated by small businesses that are doing well. You don't think its strange that all of the sudden Walmart has an interest in this area? It's not to help "he people", I can assure you that. It's to benefit their pockets. Otherwise they would have built a Walmart in Allapattah ages ago.

miamitrev2
miamitrev2 topcommenter

@Yaser Castro  

So are people that use that term.

miamitrev2
miamitrev2 topcommenter

@Jaime Brunner  

Care to elaborate on who "the wrong ppl" are?

NIMBY!

a.m.ruiz85
a.m.ruiz85

@Anthonyvop1 Lmao. Yes, liberals hate poor people because they support small businesses. Right? I mean supporting a Mega Corporation on a small business renaissance area is totally hating the poor? Is it? Or is it allowing people to have a chance to be in a middle class, and having pride and ownership of their own businesses! Instead of having to close down, and be forced to apply to Walmart which feeds and takes away. What a mind you have Sir. What a mind...

mingohills
mingohills

@Anthonyvop1 More proof "at" "right wingers" make sweeping generalities based somewhere outside of the rules of logic and consistency. 

 

a.m.ruiz85
a.m.ruiz85

I am sure people in Miami Beach would raise hell about that.

Anthonyvop1
Anthonyvop1 topcommenter

@a.m.ruiz85 @Anthonyvop1 Ahhh  So you admit you are against freedom of choice and the Free market.

Now tell me where these small businesses are that sell products cheaper than Wal-Mart? 

Anthonyvop1
Anthonyvop1 topcommenter

@mingohills @Anthonyvop1 Well it is a fact that liberals hate basic freedoms.   Here is a case of hatred of not only basic private property rights but hatred of poor people being perpetrated by the epitome of Limousine Liberals. 

"Yes, Spend other people's money on maintaining the dependent class but not in my neighborhood."


Hypocrites All



Anthonyvop1
Anthonyvop1 topcommenter

@a.m.ruiz85 @Anthonyvop1  

And the Idea that Small business built up the Wynwood area is hilarious.

Big art money backed by major corporations built up Wynwood.  

Anthonyvop1
Anthonyvop1 topcommenter

@a.m.ruiz85 @Anthonyvop1  

You do realize that in a true free market there can be no monopoly?  That is Capitalism 101.

Only the government can create a monopoly.

As for a small business competing....That is exactly what the free market is.....competition.  I have seen many small businesses thriving in the area of and right next to a Wal-Mart. 

There is a Wal-Mart on Kendall drive and yet that road is lined with strip malls filled with both big, national retailers and mom & pop stores.  According to you that cannot be and yet.......

 Yes, some businesses might suffer if a Wal-Mart moves in close.  But then again that same business would probably suffer if any other competitor moved in as well. They were probably poorly run and in a free market they should go away to the benefit of all.

a.m.ruiz85
a.m.ruiz85

@Anthonyvop1 @a.m.ruiz85 Do not put words in my mouth. If I were against Free Market, I would let Walmart monopolize the entire structure of my living needs. Then there would be No Free Market. Just Walmart.

I am for Free Market, with moderation. Nothing in excess is good. 

And common, I think your smart enough to know that no small business has the capability of competing with Walmart (Mega Corporation). They don't offer products to the people at the expense of cheap labor of children and women in third world countries. They don't lower their costs at the expense of others lives. Or pay miserable unlivable wages to their employees.

Walmart, just like small businesses all serve their purpose. I am not saying it shouldn't be built. It just shouldn't be built in Midtown, there are too many small businesses around that would get affected. And they are only trying to get in there because small businesses built up the area. 


Anthonyvop1
Anthonyvop1 topcommenter

@mingohills @Anthonyvop1 

Holy Crap!  Is that what they teach you in Public School?

You don't even have the most basic grasp of the concept of Capitalism and property rights.  you do have the "Community Organizer" down pat though

mingohills
mingohills

@Anthonyvop1 @mingohills "Well it is a fact that liberals hate basic freedoms." Again, generalities.  You also assume that all those that oppose Walmart are "Liberals" which is just plain stupid.  You also generalize basic notions of "property rights" as if it is some monolithic kingdom of one. To boot,  you then chime in with some quote about how Walmart merely "maintains a dependent class".  Talk about hypocrisy, you just defended private property rights on the grounds of monopoly and the failure of capitalism and claim that you a good logical right winger.   I know they are elusive, but please start with some facts.  At least then your generalities can be marked up as stereotypes and not just babble.

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