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Walmart Expansion Proposal Back Before Council

Will decide Monday whether to grant retailer's request to extend the public comment period by another 45 days.

 

The Rohnert Park City Council will meet Monday to decide whether to give the public more time to comment on noise, traffic and other impacts of the proposed Walmart Supercenter on Redwood Drive.

Earlier this month, the city received a letter from Walmart asking that portions of the draft environmental impact report, specifically the sections dealing with traffic and noise impacts be “re-circulated” to give residents more time to speak for or against the expansion.

Under the proposed plan, Walmart would add a grocery store, expanding the site by more than 30,000 square feet. The store is expected to generate an estimated 8,500 daily car trips.

Monday’s meeting will be held at 6pm at Rohnert Park City Hall at 123 Avram Drive. If the city grants the extension, residents will have 45 more days to submit written comments in favor or against the project. Walmart must then answer all of the concerns before the project is voted on.

Marty Bennett, co-chair of the Sonoma County Living Wage Coalition, which opposes the project, said Walmart’s request to give the public additional time to comment was a small victory.

“Given how controversial this project is, any additional opportunity for the public to comment and participate in the decision making process is a good thing,” he said.

The group argues that Walmart has a negative impact on local businesses and does not pay employees a living wage.

In 2010, the Planning Commission rejected an earlier version of the environmental report for the project. The City Council then overturned the commission's ruling on a 4-1 vote, saying the expansion conformed to the city general plan and its benefits outweighed potential negative impacts.

Concerned Resident March 23, 2013 at 02:18 PM
Please no! Is is not needed.
Concerned Resident March 25, 2013 at 06:01 PM
Please note it will damage real businesses. Labor and corporate business practice not good. This will attract more violence and unsafety.

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