A Proposed Wal-Mart in the Heights
Do You Live In The Heights? If So, For How Long?:Yes
Does A New Wal-Mart Mean New Crime?:Perhaps
@ Piknchoose & (Author) Shea Serrano
Y’all both make very interesting and valid points. It’s true that developers typically have the upper hand over the citizens of Houston. It’s also true that Houston is a very pro-business city, and partly because of that, we continue to be prosperous in spite of a recession.
The Heights and West End are very special parts of our city. They have managed to retain so much of the history and charm that helped to make this city great, but for which too many Houstonians seems to have little regard. (I point to the Montrose area, Freedman’s Town and the Fifth Ward as ongoing examples of that disregard for history.) I think I can speak for the majority of this area’s residents when I say we take a certain pride in what continues to be accomplished in making our neighborhoods even better places to live. As a whole, our city has done well in weathering the financial storm, but these neighborhoods have positively excelled! It seems foolish to tinker with a winning streak.
While certainly there are some residents that must be pleased at the prospect of having a Walmart close by, I wouldn’t venture to guess as to whether they are the minority or the majority. I do know that the neighbors and business owners I have spoken with are overwhelmingly against it. Their reasons run the gamut from concerns about: an increase in crime, the impact on area traffic, the potential loss of area businesses, the impact on the local infrastructure, to just good old-fashioned aesthetics.
That said, naturally StopHeightsWalmart.org would be a grassroots effort. It was created to address the concerns of the local people who want to affect local change. But I believe belittling any grassroots effort is to ignore the power of the ones which have gone before. Those efforts are what built the United States, literally. If citizens aren’t heard when they speak up and attempt to protect the neighborhoods they have helped to build, then maybe they just need to speak louder.