Friday, March 9, 2012

A Walmart In Elmwood Park?

Oh boy, Audrey Viau has stepped in it. It seems Walmart is in the process of submitting a proposal to the Village of Elmwood Park for the old Kohl's grocery store property at the corner of Lathrop and Durand Avenue...something known only to her alone since last fall.

It came out in last night's Village Board meeting, Village Trustees and homeowners didn't think too highly of Village President Viau's decision to keep it quiet.

Perhaps only the installation of a Union Carbide operation has more power to rile up homeowners than a Walmart can.

Now the old Kohl's is an eyesore, one that previous owner, Joe Mrazek should have torn down...but the attached businesses and subsequent foreclosure have made that far more tricky. The bank still gets rent from the surrounding businesses.

But a Walmart?

The proposed secret Walmart would sit a mere 2.7 miles from the Sturtevant Walmart Supercenter, just 3 stoplights away. It would sit about 1600 yards from the Piggly Wiggly on Durand - located in the same parking lot!

Between the new secret Walmart and the Sturtevant Walmart, one passes three other grocery stores: the Pig, the brand new Pick n Save and the Aldi...all on Durand for a grand total of FIVE grocery stores within less than three miles.

What Durand Avenue definitely doesn't need is another grocery store.

Poor Audrey, she should have told the board and now looks like a major villain for keeping the surveys and meetings to herself.

The sale of the property is in the hands of the bank - Norstates Bank of Waukegan, IL. The property is already zoned commercial. The only potential hangup for Walmart who wants a residential property sitting next to the Kohl's store is if Elmwood Park chooses not to rezone it for commercial purposes. The next Village meeting will be April 19th.

Expect it to be lively.