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Opposition to Caledonia Walmart Gathers Steam

A number of people in Caledonia don't like the idea of a Walmart in their neighborhood, but their fight may include one large challenge — the village land-use plan.

Following the news that Walmart may build a store in Caledonia, anti-Walmart signs have been cropping up along North Green Bay and 4 Mile roads.

In September, Walmart announced that it would like to build a 24-hour general merchandise store on the southeast corner of that intersection. Company officials say the store will create 300 jobs, most of which are expected to be full-time. They haven’t presented any plans to the Village Board. However, they plan to host an informational meeting next week.

Since the announcement, residents have also been passing out fliers to organize a group opposing the project, more than 140 people have joined a Facebook group called “No Walmart In Rural Caledonia,” and a local resident is hosting an informational/strategy meeting to present a unified opposition to Walmart on Saturday.

“Between the noise pollution, being open 24 hours a day, the impact on our residential area — I think it’s going to destroy our neighborhood."

Katie Tiderman, a real estate agent who lives on North Green Bay Road, said she decided to organize the meeting after she went door to door passing out fliers to drum up opposition to the project.

“Everyone that I’ve talk to is strongly against it and we want to present a united front against it,” Tiderman said. “Between the noise pollution, being open 24 hours a day, the impact on our residential area — I think it’s going to destroy our neighborhood. I also don’t think the size of our community will support that store.”

But the opposition may have some challenges to overcome because a Walmart would be allowed on that site under the village's land-use plan, which officials use to determine what kind of development should go where in Caledonia.

Mark Janiuk, the village administrator, said the land-use plan would allow for a grocery store to be built on the property as a permitted use. However, the land is currently zoned industrial and residential. So, if the project were to move forward, the property would need to be rezoned.

“Ultimately, the Village Board needs to decide whether they want to rezone the property, but the decision has really already been made in the land-use plan,” Janiuk said. “However, if the board doesn’t rezone the property and Walmart should happen to take this to court, the courts are going to be more receptive to Walmart because the village has already adopted that as an intended use in their land-use plan.”

This scenario is different than the property Walmart officials had considered on 4 Mile Road and Highway 31 in 2011 because the land-use plan designated the property as residential, which meant the land-use plan and the zoning for the property would have had to be changed for the project to move forward.

"If the (Village) Board doesn’t rezone the property and Walmart should happen to take this to court, the courts are going to be more receptive to Walmart."

The village has also studied the impact of different types of development in Caledonia.

In September 2011, the board hired Ehlers, a consulting firm, to analyze what types of developments would be suitable for the village and how much tax revenue would needed to be generated to support the operation of the village.

The study, which was presented in November, specifically looked at how commercial development would impact the village, which they said would be “relatively minor.”

However, according to the study:

Dependent upon whether the commercial development is “big box” or traditional “strip” commercial, will determine the impact. Big box type development typically will have greater draw on policing and emergency responses due to patronage volume.

Tiderman said she has looked at the land-use plan and the zoning map, and finds the plan confusing.

“On page 27 of the land-use overview states this Village Center Area allows for commercial and grocery," she said. “They also talk about percentages dedicated to different uses within that area. Again, I don’t see a Supercenter working within that plan.”

Tiderman plans on having a meeting to discuss Walmart at 6 p.m. Saturday at her home.

Walmart will host a neighborhood meeting to present the project and seek citizen input from 6 to 7:30 pm Oct. 17 at the North Park School, 4748 Elizabeth St., in the gymnasium.

An official from Walmart did not immediately return a phone call for this story.

Jeff Warg October 11, 2012 at 06:47 PM
What is to say this store would have to be open 24 hours? Caledonia could limit their hours to midnight. If Wal-Mart was forward thinking, they would drop the 24 hour proposal themselves and limit the size of the parking lot to what is really needed, unlike the monster lot they built on Hwy 11. There are 61,000 people living on the northside (that is almost one-third of Racine County's total population!!), all we have is PNS 4 Mile, a run-down PNS at Rapids Dr and Piggly Wiggly. We need more choices!! It will lower people's food costs plus provide 300 jobs. There are 6 full-size grocery stores in 53406 with 22,000 people living there. Jeremy is right, there is no where on Douglas with 15-20 acres available, unless you build near the power plant. Wal-Mart wont do that-it would be too close to their new South Milwaukee store on 32. I can remember Wal-mart real estate broker asking people to bring up potential 15-20 acre sites, did anyone talk to him? That part of Caledonia isnt rural, 70 percent of Caledonia's population lives east of 31. A Wal-Mart on Hwy V would be rural.
Tansandy October 11, 2012 at 06:56 PM
You just have to love all this not in my backyard stuff. Then you all sit and cry when our jobs go across the pond. But hey, NOT IN MY BACKYARD! You are all getting your wish. Next step, buy yen! And patchreader 123, please inform all us stupid people who just fell of the cabbage wagon how many calls and for what were made about Kmart, Target, Best Buy, Piggly Wiggly, and I could go on and on. You won't because that doesn't fit you agenda.
YAMATO October 11, 2012 at 06:58 PM
Since seeing all the Obama signs in the same yards, i am for Walmart. We need private business to support all the free loafers they support. BUILD IT!
patchreader 123 October 11, 2012 at 07:49 PM
"You just have to love all this not in my backyard stuff." And you fault anyone for attempting to protect their life's biggest invenstment, namely their homes? You can throw around the NIMBY rhetoric all you want, but let's face it, EVERYONE IS A NIMBY. You are more than welcome to contact Walmart and the officials within your own munucipality (do you even live in Caledonia?), and expressly invite Walmart to build as close to your home as possible. The only ones who would stop you, would be your own neighbors.
Avenging Angel October 11, 2012 at 08:35 PM
A picture is worth a thousand words. "I'm going to put on my horsey hat and just say NO!!"
patchreader 123 October 11, 2012 at 08:47 PM
"I have faith the Barney, Gomer, and Goober on the Village board, and they will screw this one up also." Name calling? Really? The Caledonia Village Board is in a tough position. It wants to increase revenue and services for the village while not raising residential property taxes. The study mentioned in the article was thus thoughtfully commissioned by the Board to provide it with guidance determining how to best develop Caledonia. While commercial development was recommended by the study, the study acknowledged that certain types of development (i.e., "big box type development"; p. 8 of the study) "will have a greater draw on policing and emergency responses due to patronage volume." In accordance with the study, and other similar studies across the country, many residents who oppose a big box development , be it a 4 mi/31 or 4mi/GBR, would not likely oppose a commercial development that is both less obtrusive to residents and less of a draw on municipal services (i.e., bank or professional building). These same residents that you criticize for resisting Walmart at 4mi/GBR are the same residents that have peacefully coexisted with the Calstar Products industrial facility located just east of the proposed Walmart location. Perhaps it is because this facility is not obtrusive to them?
Tom Boldus October 11, 2012 at 09:15 PM
I'm also confused by all the Obama signs, but that is another issue. Walmart will destroy that neighborhood. nice piece of Caledonia. Toby our chief of police is as we speak looking for funding for a few more officers to adjust our ratio to current population. The good people on Greenbay Rd have a rite to the peace and quiet they bought into. They are at this time dealing with the four mile railroad situation. Good people of Caledonia don't be fooled by the snake oil salesmen from Walmart that are about to tell you how your life will be much better by our very existance. It won't. Our unemployment rate in Caledonia is at about 3.5% or less. Why do we need jobs if it would cost our taxes to go up. Go to Walmart on Hy 11 about 9pm on a Fri. Night and discover what awaits you.
patchreader 123 October 11, 2012 at 10:29 PM
As mentioned in the in the above article, learn more about the study here. http://caledonia.patch.com/articles/village-board-mulls-land-use-analysis-study#video-8480257 Note 1:30 of the video, as presented by the consultant responsible for the study commissioned by the Village Board.
Lexi Noble October 11, 2012 at 11:58 PM
It would interesting to know how many police calls were made to K Mart on Douglas and also the Piggly Wiggly on 3 Mile Rd...It seems like any time any type of business wants to come to Caledonia the people in this town/village ALWAYS pi$$ and moan and before you know it...the business moves on. Everyone says put all the business out by I94...what part of... "business does not want to build where it's not developed" don't you understand? And if the board moves to develop that area who exactly do you think is going to pay for it? It would be nice to have some choice of stores on the north side of Caledonia...K Mart certainly adds nothing to the community and it never has, so I don't understand why everyone is so against Walmart, aren't they kind of the same?
Karen Itzenhuiser October 12, 2012 at 04:23 AM
We have enough grocery stores in Racine that anyone living in Caledonia can easily get to in less than 10 minutes. I find it hard to believe that your schedule is so busy that you can't take the time to go that far to shop for groceries. How many times in a day do you have to go grocery shopping anyway? I'm sure that you don't complain about having to drive 15-30 minutes to go to your favorite night spot for dinner or drinks. On the north side there is Piggly Wiggly on 3 Mile and Erie, Pick'nSave on Douglas and 4 Mile, Aldi's on Douglas, Pick'nSave on Rapids, Piggly Wiggly on Spring and Newman, Pick'nSave on Spring and 31, and a few small grocery stores and meat markets in those vicinities too. Come on people, get real! I have nothing against the WalMart Corporation, I'm saying we don't need it. If the Northsiders need more then I suggest going east of Douglas with another WalMart. Or how about a WalMart near downtown where there are no grocery stores? NIMBY!!!!!
Tansandy October 12, 2012 at 10:15 AM
Still waiting!!!! "And patchreader 123, please inform all us stupid people who just fell of the cabbage wagon how many calls and for what were made about Kmart, Target, Best Buy, Piggly Wiggly, and I could go on and on. You won't because that doesn't fit your agenda." And all you can hear are the crickets chirping.
KEEP ON KEEPING ON October 12, 2012 at 12:22 PM
Yes, I have the traffic numbers. A typical Supercenter generates 10,000 car trips on weekdays and more on Saturdays. A typical walmart of this size with parking lot occupies the size of 12 football fields of concrete and asphalt. You can expect to receive about 80-90 deliveries per week, 40 2 axle truck deliveries and 49 plus semi and tanker deliveries per week. They idle for an average of 1 hr.
KEEP ON KEEPING ON October 12, 2012 at 12:32 PM
I urge you to check out the Caledonia Land Use plan for this village center. It looks like downtown Greendale. That is the business they planned for this area, NOT a 24 hr Walmart. The Land Use Plan maps show High density residential Development and growth is wonderful. Choices are wonderful. Some were even listed in the Ehlers study. But be RESPONSIBLE!! Bring in development that ENHANCES and does not DESTROY what is here. Bring in development that truly brings REVENUE versus eating up village money for infrastructure and police. Bring in development in APPROPRIATE locations. This land is cheap and undeveloped. Bottom line $ for Walmart. Why not build this on 3 mile and Douglas-see if Vulcan will sell. Build on the old RUSD district building at that vacant building behind it?? RUSD could get $ from the sale. Develop our I-94 area like rural Grafton did, generating growth, retail variety WITHOUT destroying a residential neighborhood.
KEEP ON KEEPING ON October 12, 2012 at 12:35 PM
Stop waiting and go get the records yourself. Research how our current police to population ratio is lower than average. Go ask how many residential homes are affected by ANY police calls to those stores. Why?? Because they are NOT shoe-horned into a residential area, NOT open 24 hrs a day.
KEEP ON KEEPING ON October 12, 2012 at 12:38 PM
Again, I urge everyone to come to the meeting. See and hear the research on traffic, noise, blight, tax revenue, effect on local business, effect on local police, safety and crime.
patchreader 123 October 12, 2012 at 03:14 PM
Meeting info is at below link: http://caledonia.patch.com/events/neighborhood-strategy-meeting-to-prevent-walmart-development-on-4-mile-and-n-green-bay
Angelene October 12, 2012 at 11:12 PM
Caledonia needs business. I just wish something other than banks & bars would be built out here. How about a movie theater or an indoor ice skating ring w concessions so that we can start up hockey leagues for the kids out here & ice skating lessons. Lets keep Caledonia family orientated.
John K. Magee October 15, 2012 at 02:33 AM
I think that it would be nice to shop at Wal-Mart on Green Bay Road. that is closet to Greentree Center on Douglas Avenue and Four Mile Road area. what the differance? K-Mart and Wal-Mart are they same as positions? when it new underpass open, then what would happen that many people drive, walk, bike to either ones of Marts. K-Mart, or Wal-Mart. which is better? if Wal-mart not been approve. then it only one store, K-Mart.
KEEP ON KEEPING ON October 15, 2012 at 02:45 AM
I would say the major difference is K-mart is not buffering a huge residential area. It's not positioned on a quiet 2 lane street. It's not open 24 hrs. It's not going to get deliveries all night long. It's not 180,000 sq feet. I would say go look at K-mart, it's surroundings, Douglas avenue. Then go look at the proposed lot. See the difference? Caledonia should make responsible growth choices. Wouldn't it be nice to have a village center like the one shown on the Caledonia website? Where is that progress?? Where do you see a Supercenter in those plans?
Concerned in Caledonia October 15, 2012 at 04:27 AM
So I just read this article again and if what I'm reading is correct even if the village board says no we are not going to rezone due to the protests of the residents this will affect the most so thanks anyway Walmart. Walmart can then sue and a judge can tell the village board they have to? So why do we have an elected village board to represent our interests if a judge froom wherever can just tell them what to do?
KEEP ON KEEPING ON October 15, 2012 at 12:37 PM
No, that is not the case. Understand that Walmart cannot come into a community and do whatever they want. We have a zoning and a Land Use Plan issue here, You can look at the Land Use Plan on the Village of Caledonia website. Our job as residents and the opportunity this meeting and FUTURE board meetings will give is for us to voice our objections and inform our neighbors about what we as a community can demand of our board. Look up building moratoriums, Look up what other community leaders have done and demanded of developers. WE are this community and not a board!!
caledonia reality October 20, 2012 at 09:15 PM
how about some more used car lots, that would be much better than a walmart
caledonia reality October 20, 2012 at 09:16 PM
has anyone ever tried shopping at kmart? good luck with that
Cares4 October 21, 2012 at 01:47 AM
THE ONLY REASON THIS WALMART IS BEING SO OPPOSED IS TO KEEP MINORITIES OUT OF CALEDONIA. WHY BRING UP THE WHOLE BOGUS EXCUSE OF INCREASE IN CRIME---REALLY! YOUR EXCUSES ARE LAME AND THE THING BEING OVERLOOKED IS THAT PEOPLE NEED JOBS! WALMART WILL PROVIDE JOBS TO VETERANS, HANDICAPPED, DISABLED AND MINORITIES AS WELL AS WOMEN AND THOSE WHO HAVE BEEN UNEMPLOYED FOR FAR TOO LONG. THE WHOLE RURAL SOLITUDE IS GARBAGE AND AN IMPACT ON BUSINESSES IS A JOKE. FOR ONE CALEDONIA ONLY HAS ONE 24 HOUR ESTABLISHMENT AND THAT IS WALGREENS AND YOU CAN NOT GROCERY SHOP AT WALGREENS. AS FOR K-MART THEY HAVE A LAYAWAY AND WALMART DOESN'T SO THERE WILL BE REASONS WHY PEOPLE WILL CONTINUE TO SHOP AT THE AREA BUSINESSES THEY HAVE BEEN WHETHER WALMART IS BUILT THERE OR NOT. IF THE VILLAGE BOARD OF CALEDONIA WOULD STOP BEING SO SMALL MINDED THEY WOULD SEE THIS AS AN OPPORTUNITY TO BRING REVENUE INTO A DYING VILLAGE! BOOT THE EXCUSES AND SAY YES TO CHANGE AND OPPORTUNITY! MAYBE BRINGING WALMART TO CALEDONIA WILL ATTRACT OTHER BUSINESSES FROM OPENING TOO. CALEDONIA NEEDS A FACELIFT AND THIS WOULD BE A STEP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION. WALMART WILL PROVIDE NOT ONLY JOB SKILLS FOR THOSE THAT NEED IT BUT IT WILL ALSO OPEN DOORS FOR VOLUNTEERING AND HELP THE COMMUNITY IT OPERATES IN----THINK ABOUT IT WHAT OTHER BUSINESS HAS THOUGHT OF COMING TO THIS DYING VILLAGE! WAKE UP PEOPLE AND STOP LETTING YOUR BIGOTRY FROM GIVING OTHERS AN OPPORTUNITY TO WORK!
Cares4 October 21, 2012 at 01:56 AM
a village board needs to take into consideration what is best for the village, correct? well we all know the unemployment rate for wisconsin and each city, town, and village contributes to our high unemployment rate, including caledonia. we need a grocery store on the northside of racine besides pick n save that is open 24 hours and provides items at a lower price, but not only that we need a business that will actually hire people from the community it will operate in. do you know how hard it is to get a job at k mart no matter how many job skills you have? walmart will employ a lot more people than k mart, walgreens and pick n save combined. if the village board wants walmart to be a good neighbor then come up with some viable plans to make them be sustainably responsible.
Cares4 October 21, 2012 at 02:05 AM
CALEDONIA NEEDS ANOTHER STORE BESIDES K MART, FOR ONE K MART DOES NOT HIRE AS MUCH AS WALMART AND THEY DO NOT KEEP MOST OF THEIR EMPLOYEES AFTER THE HOLIDAYS WHEREAS WALMART KEEPS ALL THEIR SEASONAL EMPLOYEES AS REGULAR EMPLOYEES INSTEAD OF LETTING THEM GO TO COLLECT UNEMPLOYMENT. DONT GET ME WRONG I SHOP AT K MART AND LOVE THE FACT THEY HAVE A LAYAWAY, BUT THEY ARE NOT 24 HOURS AND THEY DO NOT HAVE A LARGE ENOUGH GROCERY SECTION TO DO ANY SHOPPING. PICK N SAVE CLOSES AT WHAT 11 PM SO WHAT ABOUT THE PEOPLE WHO WANT TO STOP IN ON THEIR WAY TO MAYBE MILWAUKEE LATE AT NIGHT NO LUCK CAUSE THEY ARE CLOSED. WHAT ABOUT IF SOMEONE WANTED TO PICK UP A SITE TO STORE ITEM ON THEIR WAY OUT OF RACINE VIA DOUGLAS NO SUCH LUCK THEY WOULD HAVE TO SWING AROUND AND GO COMPLETELY OUT OF THE WAY TO PICK IT UP AT THE STURTEVANT LOCATION. CMON HAVING WALMART IN CALEDONIA MAKES A WHOLE MORE SENSE THAN NOT HAVING THEM. OPENING THAT NEW MARKET ON HWY 20 I WILL ADMIT IS A DUMB IDEA CAUSE IT IS TOO CLOSE TO THE HWY 11 LOCATION AND THEN THERES ONE IN KENOSHA ON 31 TOO THATS JUST WAY TOO CLOSE. THE NORTHSIDE IS IN NEED OF ANOTHER OPTION TO SHOP BESIDES PICK N SAVE, WALGREENS AND K MART.
Cares4 October 21, 2012 at 02:07 AM
GOOD IDEAS BUT WHO HAS THE COURAGE TO VOICE THEM TO PEOPLE THAT WILL DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT? HOW ABOUT INCLUDING THE MINORITY CHILDREN IN THESE PLANS? WHAT ABOUT THE FAMILIES THAT CAN NOT AFFORD RECREATIONAL ACTIVITIES, EVERYTHING ALWAYS HAS A HIGH PRICE TAG ATTACHED TO IT IN ORDER FOR KIDS TO PARTICIPATE. WHY NOT COME UP WITH SOMETHING THAT ACTUALLY INCLUDES THE PEOPLE THAT CALL CALEDONIA HOME?
Cares4 October 21, 2012 at 02:14 AM
WHAT ABOUT THE PEOPLE THAT HAVE LIMITED TRANSPORTATION AND CAN NOT GO MILES AWAY TO SHOP AND WITH THIS LOCATION CAN LITERALLY WALK TO THE STORE? CMON PIGS IS SUPER EXPENSIVE AND IS TARGETED TOWARD CAUCASIAN PEOPLE OF A UPPER CLASS SOCIETY NOT THE STRUGGLING SINGLE PARENT HOME OF A MINORITY FAMILY FOR REAL. ALDIS IS ONLY OPEN AT CERTAIN HOURS WALMART WOULD PROVIDE AN OPPORTUNITY FOR THOSE THAT WORK THEM UNCONVENTIONAL HOURS TO SHOP AND NOT HAVE TO TRAVEL SO FAR TO DO SO. AS FOR DRINKS AND DINNER ARE YOU KIDDING MOST PEOPLE ARE TRYING TO KEEP GAS IN THEIR VEHICLES AND GET TO WORK NOT BLOW MONEY ON STUPID STUFF LIKE DRINKS AND DINNER OUT. IT IS THE CLOSED MINDED PEOPLE SUCH AS YOURSELF THAT WILL END UP BLOCKING AN OPPORTUNITY FOR THOSE WHO NEED JOBS TO HAVE TO KEEP LOOKING AND COLLECTING UNEMPLOYMENT.
Cares4 October 21, 2012 at 02:17 AM
LOVE YOUR COMMENT! THESE PEOPLE NEED TO REALLY TAKE A LOOK AROUND AND SEE WHY CALEDONIA LOOKS LIKE A GHOST TOWN IN THE FIRST PLACE, BECAUSE THEY ARE ALWAYS OPPOSING EVERYTHING! AND IF THEY REALLY CARED ABOUT THE PEOPLE THAT LIVE IN CALEDONIA THEY WOULD STOP ALL THIS OPPOSING MESS AND LET WALMART BUILD SO RESIDENTS OF CALEDONIA CAN WORK!
Cares4 October 21, 2012 at 02:21 AM
WHAT A BIG LIE! AT 9 PM AT THE STURTEVANT LOCATION IT IS BUSY BECAUSE THAT LOCATION IS THE ONLY ONE WITH CHEAPER PRICES AND IT IS WAY OUT THERE SO OF COURSE EVERYONE HITS THE BEST SPOT ALL AT ONCE. CALEDONIA HAD THE BUSES STOPPED AT THE SHORECREST PLAZA SHOPPING CENTER FOR A WHILE WHY? CALEDONIA IS SLOWLY DYING AND NO ONE HAS A CLUE ON HOW TO REVIVE THE VILLAGE BECAUSE THEY ARE ALL POINTING THEIR FINGERS AT STUPID THINGS.

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