Wednesday, August 29, 2012
Walmart officials withdrew their application in part, they said, because of bad timing. One member of the Friends of the Village of Elmwood Park, a group that organized in opposition of the store, is "more than satisfied" by the corporation's move.
The organized opposition from the Friends of the Village of Elmwood Park seems to have worked: Walmart has withdrawn its application for a Neighborhood Market in that village. According to a statement sent via e-mail on Wednesday, the "unique circumstances" surrounding the old Kohl's site at Lathrop and Durand Avenues prompted the company's about-face. "The very unique circumstances at the vacant Kohl's store in Elmwood Park and Racine have made that project infeasible from a cost and timing perspective, and, after much due diligence, we have decided to re-evaluate the market. Walmart is excited to seek other opportunities to improve the shopping options of our Racine area customers," the statement read. Nick Haas, a member of the Friends …
Thursday, August 9, 2012
The Village Board was looking at the end of September for their public hearing over amending their land use plan, but without legal counsel, trustees are postponing scheduling the hearing.
Trustees are trying to hire a new attorney, and until they do, the public hearing waits for what could lead to a new Walmart in Elmwood Park. Tempers were already running hot Thursday at the village board meeting as the 50 attending residents continued to loudly object to the proposed Walmart that would require the village to amend its 2035 land use plan that restricts commercial development to two acres. Walmart wants to buy the old Kohl's store at Lathrop and Durand Avenues as well as the residential parcel directly south of it to build a new, 40,000 square foot Neighborhood Market grocery store. The residential lot would need to be rezoned to allow commercial development beyond the Kohl's site, and to get to that point, Elmwood Park …
Thursday, August 2, 2012
Elmwood Park resident Scott Russell does not support changing the village's land use plan to allow Walmart to build-to-suit.
Thursday, August 2, 2012
There is no opposition to the development of the Kohl's property itself. The main issue here is the rezoning of an additional 3+ acres of residential property to commercial. Why push a rezoning when numerous other commercial sites are available? Two prominent areas that come to mind are the vacant Sam's Club off S. Greenbay Road and the old Aldi's complex at 21st and Lathrop Avenue. These good options have space, zoning, infrastructure and no direct competition. With no guarantees of commitment from Walmart, they won't own the property, they could break the lease and leave an even larger vacant building and surrounding area. This has happened in at least five other communities including Kenosha. Rezoned residential property is lost, …
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Planning Commission members voted to recommend that the Village Board set a public hearing date about possibly amending Elmwood Park's land use plan.
A public hearing that could help determine whether or not Elmwood Park amends its land use plan will take place but probably not until September. The village's Plan Commission on Monday night voted to send a recommendation to the Village Board for a public hearing so residents can voice their opinions about amending Elmwood Park's comprehensive plan. At the center of the issue is a proposed Walmart Neighborhood Market where the former Kohl's building stands at Lathrop and Durand Avenues. Walmart's site plan includes purchasing that property as well as the three-acre residential lot directly south. Because that parcel, owned by the Heinrichs, is zoned for residential, Walmart is asking Elmwood Park to rezone it to commercial to make way for…
Monday, July 16, 2012
The Planning Commission needs to schedule a public hearing, which is required whether or not they ultimately decide to revise Elmwood Park's land use plan.
The Elmwood Park Planning Commission Monday will discuss whether or not it recommends revising the village's land use plan to allow for more commercial development space. Doing so could potentially clear the way for a Walmart Neighborhood Market at the corner of Lathrop and Durand Avenues. Walmart is interested in buying the old Kohl's building as well as a residential parcel behind the commercial space to make way for a 40,000 square foot grocery store. The site plan pushes the building back about 100 feet, which is why they are asking for the residential land to be rezoned to commercial. The rezone request is triggering the review and possible revision of the village's land use plan. That document is clear about where and how much …
Thursday, June 28, 2012
Village President Audrey Viau called a meeting to re-address a motion on which the board already voted, but the meeting and the vote may very well have been illegal.
Residents in the tiny village of Elmwood Park exploded in anger Thursday night over trustees participating in what could turn out to be an illegal meeting. About 50 village residents attended the meeting, which was also being watched by three Racine County Sheriff's deputies called by the village to help keep order. At the end of the meeting, the deputies escorted Viau out of the building. At issue is whether or not Village President Audrey Viau had the authority to call a special meeting of the board to re-address a motion that residents say was voted down at the regular board meeting on June 14. As a point of order, only a trustee can request redress and only at the next regular Village Board meeting. Further, the trustee entering the …
Friday, June 22, 2012
Despite her term being up next April, residents feel the village's future depends on removing Audrey Viau as president of Elmwood Park before that vote.
Citing serious concerns about the village president's leadership, a group of Elmwood Park residents is exploring options to remove her from office. The Friends of the Village of Elmwood Park is upset about the way Village President Audrey Viau is governing. To remedy the situation before the April 2013 general election — when Viau's sixth term is up — residents are looking at how to remove her from office, possibly by the end of the summer. According to village resident and group member Maureen Bagg, the Friends are looking at three options: "Recall is a long and drawn out process, and petitioning the board carries some concern because we get could a split vote and then what do we do?" Bagg explained. "We think we'll have enough …