Wal-Mart Gets Key To Chicago

Discussion
Apr 21, 2004
George Anderson

By George Anderson

Ald. Emma Mitts (37th ward) said Wal-Mart belongs in her West Side district of Chicago and it appears she ‘ll get it with yesterday’s City Council approval of a zoning change, reports the Chicago Sun-Times.

“This is something the community wants. Wal-Marts are crowded all over the [suburbs]. . . . Why not keep those dollars and create jobs? I started working at age 13. You think our children don’t need opportunities so they can learn to go to work, get experience and elevate themselves?”

Wal-Mart’s plans call for it to build two discount stores within the Chicago city limits.

Although the zoning change was approved, members of the Council expressed some reservations.

Ald. Ed Smith of Chicago’s 28th ward told Wal-Mart’s regional manager for community affairs, John Bisio. “I have not seen any place where you’re going to use minority contractors. That is the part I’m concerned about. We don’t intend for you to disrespect our community and not have blacks, Hispanics and women in the construction part of this project. We are going to watch that.”

Moderator’s Comment: What will Wal-Mart’s entry into Chicago mean for the retailer, the competition and the local
community?

To quote the great Billy Preston, “Nothin’ from nothin’, leaves nothin’.” Wal-Mart will bring something to the West Side of Chicago.
George
Anderson – Moderator

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