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Wal-Mart to invade the Heights


Walmart at Yale & I-10: For or Against  

160 members have voted

  1. 1. Q1: Regarding the proposed WalMart at Yale and I-10:

    • I live within a 3 mile radius (as the crow flies) and am FOR this Walmart
      41
    • I live within a 3 mile radius (as the crow flies) and am AGAINST this Walmart
      54
    • I live outside a 3 mile radius (as the crow flies) and am FOR this Walmart
      30
    • I live outside a 3 mile radius (as the crow flies) and am AGAINST this Walmart
      26
    • Undecided
      9
  2. 2. Q2: If/when this proposed WalMart is built at Yale & I-10

    • I am FOR this WalMart and will shop at this WalMart
      45
    • I am FOR this WalMart but will not shop at this WalMart
      23
    • I am AGAINST this WalMart but will shop at this WalMart
      7
    • I am AGAINST this WalMart and will not shop at this WalMart
      72
    • Undecided
      13
  3. 3. Q3: WalMart in general

    • I am Pro-Walmart
      16
    • I am Anti-Walmart
      63
    • I don't care either way
      72
    • Undecided
      9

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Is that the rubicon, whether or not you walk your own children and pets? Is that what divides snobbery from community activism? I just don't get it, with all that's wrong in the world, with all the pl

I'd love nothing more than to see the concerned heights neighbors do a real protest of the proposed Yale Wal Mart. Think of it as a meaningful vacation from strenuous days of blogging, girls lunches

I, too, feel compelled to go public with this message. Since you don't live in the Heights, why don't you take your crunchy-tastic, holier-than-thou, self-righteous and judgemental attitude, drag Nic

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Parking lot trees probably aren't "shade trees". And they belong to Walmart, not the public. This development was supposed to be "better" because of the 380, specifically as to sidewalks and trees. It's not. It's worse. Yale and Koehler should be tree-lined.

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Oh, I don't know. I bet the Walmart trees will have limbs and leaves and all the other cool things that Heights or Target trees have. I'm willing to bet that if one stands under them they may even block the sunlight, providing 'shade' as it were.

I am a bit concerned about the part where Walmart owns them. Will Walmart prevent us from looking at their trees, or standing under them? Will Walmart not let their trees play with the other neighborhood trees? If so, can I prohibit you from looking at my trees?

By the way, I like the improvements to Yale. But, then again, I am not prohibited from looking at Walmart's trees. The area looks better if you can look at...and more importantly, appreciate...all of the trees, rather than just some of them.

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Parking lot trees probably aren't "shade trees". And they belong to Walmart, not the public. This development was supposed to be "better" because of the 380, specifically as to sidewalks and trees. It's not. It's worse. Yale and Koehler should be tree-lined.

I don't think they'll be segregating the oxygen provided by those trees. We all get to breathe it.

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Parking lot trees probably aren't "shade trees". And they belong to Walmart, not the public. This development was supposed to be "better" because of the 380, specifically as to sidewalks and trees. It's not. It's worse. Yale and Koehler should be tree-lined.

7646822482_b9b9dfbf7b_z.jpg

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Yes, my comment about giving all the city's property to Walmart was silly - we don't need to give them anything else.

But it's not silly that the City told us that the 380 will make the development better, specifically as to sidewalks and trees when it actually makes the development worse as to sidewalks and trees. The public expected tree-lined sidewalks, instead, they got more than nine 22-year-old oaks cut down and replaced with four 1.5-inch crepe myrtles. It's wrong. The City isn't holding Walmart to Chapter 33, they aren't holding them to the replat of Koehler that required 4-inch trees on Koehler. They aren't even holding them to the original approved planting plan. This is not a "better" development, it's subpar.

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Yes, my comment about giving all the city's property to Walmart was silly - we don't need to give them anything else.

But it's not silly that the City told us that the 380 will make the development better, specifically as to sidewalks and trees when it actually makes the development worse as to sidewalks and trees. The public expected tree-lined sidewalks, instead, they got more than nine 22-year-old oaks cut down and replaced with four 1.5-inch crepe myrtles. It's wrong. The City isn't holding Walmart to Chapter 33, they aren't holding them to the replat of Koehler that required 4-inch trees on Koehler. They aren't even holding them to the original approved planting plan. This is not a "better" development, it's subpar.

Source?

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Will the HAHC mandate that the new bridge be constructed using only vintage material and engineering methods? Sure, they don't actually have a say in the matter, but you know..

Close.

Complicating factors in design planning and length of construction include the bridge's span over the White Oak Bayou, which would get the Harris County Flood Control District involved, and its designation on the National Register of Historic Places, which mandates that any redesign would incorporate the current aesthetic features of the bridge.

The question now becomes, "Will RUDH applaud this decision, or will they complain about the cost to replace it?"

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Houston19514, did you see the link I posted previously to the approved planting plan? That plan is no longer valid. I don't have a link for the new plan, but if I find one, I will post it. I do appreciate you asking for the data and I wish I could provide it to you now.

Red, the City is on the hook for around $115K worth of cosmetic work on the current bridge - plus 20% overhead and unknown interest. Yay new balusters and paint!

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I drive by this thing every single day, twice per day, and even though I do not personally shop at Walmart, the development on the Walmart side of Yale is not ugly....I dont really know what you think you deserve, or why you think you deserve anything, but as far as Walmarts, and for that matter strip centers in general go this thing is beautiful....Look at the Kroger on 11th, or any of that crap that is on 11th between I-10 and 11th...its all Hideous...this story is quite beautiful in comparison....even the sub-tenant shops are being made of a very attractive stone.

If you dont like this, you just don't like strip developments in general. If you don't like strip center developments you need to move to another country as these styles are all that is being built EVERYWHERE. Its not isolated to Houston or Texas - its the entire country. Its not necessarily a trend I like, but landlords want money and strip centers cost less to make, command similar rents to standalone buildings, and are more easily rented to just about any type of business.

You are just banging your head against a wall complaining about it b/c nothing is going to change....ever.

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Red, not wanting to pay for cosmetic work on a bridge that is schedule to be demolished is not the same as not wanting to pay for the bridge to be replaced. I'm all for replacing the bridge. I think that is what public money is for - public infrastructure.

Marksmu, I don't object to the development itself, I object to the City saying the 380 is going to make it better, specifically as to sidewalks and trees. I think I've typed "specifically as to sidewalks and trees" in here a few times. We are paying for the sidewalks and trees. The trees are going into the Walmart parking lot. Mitigation of demolished trees in the ROW calls for trees replaced in the ROW. Chapter 33 calls for street trees. There are none. Why? The replat of Koehler calls for street trees. There are none. Why? How is no trees better than trees?

I object to the 380. And I will continue to object to the 380. And I hope that someday the City will not be able to enter into this kind of deal.

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I'm OK with the 380. I think the street improvements are worth the money spent. I like the cleaning up of that brownfield. I even think the design of the Walmart is fairly good for a big box. That the Walmart haters despise it is simply gravy.

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Houston19514, did you see the link I posted previously to the approved planting plan? That plan is no longer valid. I don't have a link for the new plan, but if I find one, I will post it. I do appreciate you asking for the data and I wish I could provide it to you now.

Yes, I did see that link. Where did you learn that they have changed the landscaping plan?

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trees, regardless of their location help reduce heat, they don't care whether they are planted in a walmart parking lot, or a median, or over a sidewalk.

honestly, it's far cheaper for YOU AND I if these trees are planted on walmart property, guess what happens when construction is done? Someone has to keep them watered, that's on walmart now.

the 380 might be something you and I are paying for immediately, but the fact is, the money will be paid back, and we will have less costs involved in the long run.

out of all the anti-walmart rhetoric displayed here, this is truly the most silly.

edit: it is true that there will be less shade over the sidewalk, and in the median, but (and this is going to be especially true once the feeders are completed) who is going to walk form the north of i-10 under i-10 to get to walmart on yale, or any of the other places beyond walmart?

Edited by samagon
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samagon, there should be trees in the walmart parking lot AND along the streets. The median already has trees. Developers are supposed to keep the street trees alive for 2 years. The live oaks on Yale survived for 22 years. For the 380 - they pay now, we pay them back later plus unknown and uncapped interest.

nobody is going to walk from I10 along Yale to get to Walmart, but they might swim (bridge being torn down joke).

Houston19514, from a low-ranking government official.

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I'm OK with the 380. I think the street improvements are worth the money spent. I like the cleaning up of that brownfield. I even think the design of the Walmart is fairly good for a big box. That the Walmart haters despise it is simply gravy.

I did not realize it was a brownfield, which now makes me want to support them even more. Brownfields are the liability hot potato that no one wants to face risks on. Can't really build homes on them, forget community gardens or parks, shopping centers are pretty much it.

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Yes, it was a steel mill for decades. Walmart haters try to make it sound as if Walmart came in and ruined an idyllic pasture, but it was a rusting steel mill. The 'Stop The Heights Walmart' Facebook page even blatantly lied, calling it a greenfield the other day.

From+Steel+Mill.jpg

Edited by RedScare
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Redscare, what day? I looked back over a month and couldn't find any reference to a greenfield on the Stop the Heights Walmart facebook page. In what context was it said?

Look at the comments under the alligator story. The July 17 post by Stop The Heights Walmart begins...

373718_139262986085683_1775233094_q.jpgStop the Heights Wal-Mart! ‎@Michael: The Walmart and Kroger sites were formerly greenfields.

This is patently false in regard to both sites. A quick glance at Google Earth Historical as recently as April 2006 clearly shows industrial sites at both locations. Perhaps Stop The Heights Walmart editors do not know what a greenfield is, but they clearly mislabeled both sites.

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Quizno's

Check cash store

AT&T store

Mattress Firm

Chipotle

Wings n Things (I wish)

Spec's (I wish more)

Starsucks

Bed bath and beyond (please god no)

Marble slab

Chuck e cheese (at which point the anti-burbanites' heads explode!!!!)

Chronicle is reporting the new tenants

http://blog.chron.com/primeproperty/2012/07/new-tenants-for-heights-area-walmart-center-announced/

JP Morgan Chase

Taco Cabana

Visionworks

Sport Clips

Jersey Mike’s

Nailtime

GNC

GameStop

Corner Bakery

Starbucks

Verizon

Which Wich

Chipotle

So it is as bad as it seems both a walmart and a starbucks, nail salon, bank, and a liqour store (not listed above but the sign is already up.)

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Chronicle is reporting the new tenants

http://blog.chron.co...nter-announced/

JP Morgan Chase

Taco Cabana

Visionworks

Sport Clips

Jersey Mike’s

Nailtime

GNC

GameStop

Corner Bakery

Starbucks

Verizon

Which Wich

Chipotle

So it is as bad as it seems both a walmart and a starbucks, nail salon, bank, and a liqour store (not listed above but the sign is already up.)

Regular old one stop suburban plaza. You cant escape it.

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Chronicle is reporting the new tenants

http://blog.chron.co...nter-announced/

JP Morgan Chase

Taco Cabana

Visionworks

Sport Clips

Jersey Mike’s

Nailtime

GNC

GameStop

Corner Bakery

Starbucks

Verizon

Which Wich

Chipotle

So it is as bad as it seems both a walmart and a starbucks, nail salon, bank, and a liqour store (not listed above but the sign is already up.)

Feels almost like it's some strip center in a craptastic Towne Centre way the eff out in Woodlands, Katy, Sealy, SugarLand, etc, etc, ad nauseam.

Don't worry. In a few years the 24-hour check cashing place, used mattress store, criKet, work source, 24-hour game room, and touristas americanos will set up shop within or directly across the street from this place.

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Look at the comments under the alligator story. The July 17 post by Stop The Heights Walmart begins...

373718_139262986085683_1775233094_q.jpgStop the Heights Wal-Mart! ‎@Michael: The Walmart and Kroger sites were formerly greenfields.

This is patently false in regard to both sites. A quick glance at Google Earth Historical as recently as April 2006 clearly shows industrial sites at both locations. Perhaps Stop The Heights Walmart editors do not know what a greenfield is, but they clearly mislabeled both sites.

I'm sure they really meant WAY back before the industrial sites were built....

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This is patently false in regard to both sites. A quick glance at Google Earth Historical as recently as April 2006 clearly shows industrial sites at both locations. Perhaps Stop The Heights Walmart editors do not know what a greenfield is, but they clearly mislabeled both sites.

So the new meme should be that Wal-Mart closed down an American Steel Mill and built a store that imports steel bicycles made by Chinese kids beaten twice daily.

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So it is as bad as it seems both a walmart and a starbucks, nail salon, bank, and a liqour store (not listed above but the sign is already up.)

Sunnyside would be happy to have these. Quit moaning.

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When did a liquor store become a bad thing?

I'm thinking if the Heights had more of them, there would be less worrying about Hardiplank and Wal-mart.

But then HAIF would only have 47 posts.

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Actually, there are two within walking distance of my house. This likely explains why I have no concerns about either Hardie or Walmart. However, it appears that only beer and liquor have this effect. Wine appears to cause tight sphincters, thus lowering tolerance for Walmarts and James Hardie products. As more wine bars open in and near the Heights, sphincter tightening has risen to epidemic levels, causing much fear and loathing of James Hardie and Sam Walton.

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So the new meme should be that Wal-Mart closed down an American Steel Mill and built a store that imports steel bicycles made by Chinese kids beaten twice daily.

Which would be wrong, since the steel plant was closed for years before WalMart came along

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Which would be wrong, since the steel plant was closed for years before WalMart came along

Yes, but the untold story is that Sam Walton in a Galt-like move visited the steel mill and convinced the owner to quit and join him up in the Ozarks.

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Yes, but the untold story is that Sam Walton in a Galt-like move visited the steel mill and convinced the owner to quit and join him up in the Ozarks.

That makes sense. I just had not considered the possibility. I am no match for those stratgic thinkers in Bentonville.

Edited by Ross
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When did a liquor store become a bad thing?

Its not a bad thing and for the folks who live under the yale street bridge, they have more potent options than what is sold at the gas station.

I am only contrasting the idea that was initially proposed ( tree lined biking and walking trails with unique shopping and dining) to what actually gets built ( a standard crappy stip mall copied and pasted from some anonymous place).

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Feels almost like it's some strip center in a craptastic Towne Centre way the eff out in Woodlands, Katy, Sealy, SugarLand, etc, etc, ad nauseam.

Don't worry. In a few years the 24-hour check cashing place, used mattress store, criKet, work source, 24-hour game room, and touristas americanos will set up shop within or directly across the street from this place.

The check cashing store is called "Loan Depot", their sign is up already.

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Its not a bad thing and for the folks who live under the yale street bridge, they have more potent options than what is sold at the gas station.

I am only contrasting the idea that was initially proposed ( tree lined biking and walking trails with unique shopping and dining) to what actually gets built ( a standard crappy stip mall copied and pasted from some anonymous place).

I realize that Ainbinder said that he hoped to get those types of tenants, but after a very vocal group promised to boycott any store or restaurant that located there, is it any surprise that the tenants that signed leases are those that can afford to weather a threatened boycott and those who cater to a clientele different from those who threatened to boycott? Are you suggesting that the boycott threats were not sincere, or are you suggesting that no one should pay any attention to those who threaten boycotts? Didn't RUDH and its supporters get exactly what they bargained for, a bunch of stores that they will never shop at?

I suggested way back when this all started that a better approach would be to negotiate improvements, since there was no legal way to keep Ainbinder or Walmart out. The enlightened set ignored me. They are now getting what they deserved. They really have no on else to blame. Even zoning would not have kept that development out. So, enjoy the fruits of your labor.

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I realize that Ainbinder said that he hoped to get those types of tenants, but after a very vocal group promised to boycott any store or restaurant that located there, is it any surprise that the tenants that signed leases are those that can afford to weather a threatened boycott and those who cater to a clientele different from those who threatened to boycott? Are you suggesting that the boycott threats were not sincere, or are you suggesting that no one should pay any attention to those who threaten boycotts? Didn't RUDH and its supporters get exactly what they bargained for, a bunch of stores that they will never shop at?

I suggested way back when this all started that a better approach would be to negotiate improvements, since there was no legal way to keep Ainbinder or Walmart out. The enlightened set ignored me. They are now getting what they deserved. They really have no on else to blame. Even zoning would not have kept that development out. So, enjoy the fruits of your labor.

Agreed.

And I think it is interesting that the set of folks who abhor this development likely don't live within a proximity where they will be directly impacted for better or worse. In speaking with my brother over the weekend, who could throw a rock from his apartment and hit the Walmart, he's pretty excited about it. He doesn't own a vehicle and the prospect of more dining options and a grocery he can walk to is great.

I'm no Walmart fan but it's redevelopment of some unused old land, big deal. Not like we needed more townhouses crammed in there anyway.

Edited by TonyM
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I realize that Ainbinder said that he hoped to get those types of tenants, but after a very vocal group promised to boycott any store or restaurant that located there, is it any surprise that the tenants that signed leases are those that can afford to weather a threatened boycott and those who cater to a clientele different from those who threatened to boycott? Are you suggesting that the boycott threats were not sincere, or are you suggesting that no one should pay any attention to those who threaten boycotts? Didn't RUDH and its supporters get exactly what they bargained for, a bunch of stores that they will never shop at?

I suggested way back when this all started that a better approach would be to negotiate improvements, since there was no legal way to keep Ainbinder or Walmart out. The enlightened set ignored me. They are now getting what they deserved. They really have no on else to blame. Even zoning would not have kept that development out. So, enjoy the fruits of your labor.

The developer is 100% responsible for how this thing turned out. All those involved with the development have been in Houston for decades and have no excuse for not knowing that the neighborhood would not welcome a Walmart. Further, the development is probably getting the same tenants it would have gotten with or without any pushback on the Walmart. No "chef-driven" restaurant in the world would share a development with a Walmart. It is telling that Ruggles Green and Sonoma are willing to go through all of the trouble with building out space in the Heights that does not have much parking and running into all kinds of permitting delays when all those issues could be avoided by taking a spot in the Walmart development. It is not just the threat of a boycott that is keeping tenants out. It is the fact that the development is anchored by a big ugly Walmart with all of the traffic, crime and litter that come with a Walmart that is keeping anything decent out of that development.

There has never been any kind of organized boycott aside from an occasional comment on a facebook page or message board. Many of the tenants announced recently in the press release have been up on Orr and Ainbinder's website for months. Opponents could have started campaigns to get those tenants to reconsider, but have instead been working to make sure the Yale St. bridge is eventually made safe for Walmart's 18 wheeler traffic.

No one bothered to negotiate for improvements because the developer and Walmart were going to do whatever they wanted to do. The City supposedly had 6 mil in leverage to get "improvements" to the development. What did they get? Brick facade? Whooppppeee. Some trees that are a smidge wider than required? Wowsers. If the City can't get squat with 6 mil what in the world are a bunch of residents supposed to be able to get?

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...If the City can't get squat with 6 mil what in the world are a bunch of residents supposed to be able to get?

Heights-Norhill Little League sponsors, that's what. You don't hate kids too, right?

Edit: And jobs! Got two teenagers who need gas money.

Edited by fwki
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There is almost nothing negative at all about this development, whichas far as I can tell is why the primary opponents have had to turn magnifying glasses and complaints onto a bridge which has always been there.

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There is almost nothing negative at all about this development, whichas far as I can tell is why the primary opponents have had to turn magnifying glasses and complaints onto a bridge which has always been there.

I have to agree, 74 pages of posts that amount to nothing, although I do appreciate the progress reports and photos since I have used alternate routes during construction. We used to call that neighborhood west of the steel mill Crackton. That mill made many of the bridge super structures around Houston until it got hemmed-in and couldn't easily transport the wide and tall loads to job sites. And Crackton made many of the crimes in the Heights. But here I go again waxing on about the good ole days.....

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It's important to realize that s3mh only moved here a couple of years ago, so he is completely unaware of the thrill that was cruising Crackton. He didn't know what the steel mill looked like, as it was gone when he arrived. I guess he can be forgiven his ignorance, as he is a newbie.

What is strange is that such a newb can claim to be an expert on the hoods we've lived in for years before he got here.

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The only real "negative" is that there is a ridiculous perceived opportunity cost that something "really, really super awesome that everyone in the Heights would love and would make this the premiere place in the entire city to go to!" would have been built there instead

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