Cedar Hill Could Use Three Walmarts, According to Walmart

Categories: Development

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Walmart is considering putting a Walmart here, but promises it will be more sustainable.
How many Walmarts does a city need to thrive? People living in the hip circle of neighborhoods surrounding downtown Dallas say we have enough Walmarts, Walmart-affiliated stores and other big boxes to sustain us and it's time to consider some development that isn't a giant box and acres of ashphalt. Residents in the neighborhood near Haskell Avenue and Central Expressway recently won a restraining order to temporarily stop Trammell Crow from building a 130,000-square-foot Sam's Club nearby, in what was supposed to be a walkable development called the East Village.

Eighteen miles away from the proposed East Village development rests the suburb of Cedar Hill, a town with a lot of nice trees and chain stores. There's a Half Price books, a SuperTarget and a Walmart, along with several Walmarts just outside city limits, ensuring that Cedar Hill residents will never go hungry for super savings ever again.

But that's not enough. Walmart is now considering putting two other Walmarts in Cedar Hill.

Why does Cedar Hill (population: 46,461) need three Walmarts? Because the new Walmarts will be smaller stores called Neighborhood Markets. Those are different, Walmart says.

At last night's Cedar Hill City Council meeting, a Walmart attorney requested a local zoning change on behalf of Walmart Neighborhood Stores. The change would lower the number of parking spaces required for any new grocery store in the city. When the Walmart attorney made his pitch for less parking, he almost sounded like an anti-Walmart activist.

"Excessive parking has a negative impact on walkability," he said at the meeting, echoing the sentiments of many urban planners across the country. "The parking reduction would allow, again, more sustainable development."

One of the new Walmart Neighborhood Markets is already in development in Cedar Hill, according to the News, on Joe Wilson Road. The third Walmart location isn't official yet, but the store is considering opening a spot in the High Pointé neighborhood, on a patch currently occupied by dirt and trees. Residents this week complained that they didn't want a Walmart there given all the other Walmart options. The Walmart attorney countered that this would be a Walmart Neighborhood Market, different from a Walmart Super Center.

It's not an unfamiliar pitch. Walmart has been making a big push nationally to expand its so-called Neighborhood Markets. They're much smaller than the super-centers, sell more groceries, have smaller parking lots and supposedly a more neighborhood-like feel. For reference, the Walmart on Lower Greenville Avenue is actually one of its Neighborhood Markets. Can't you tell?

The Cedar Hill City Council approved Walmart's parking zoning change request last night, paving the way for more potential neighborhood markets, or at least Walmarts that call themselves neighborhood markets. If Cedar Hill does eventually get three Walmarts, this will be even more exciting than the news we brought you that Addison may soon get another TGI Friday's.

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35 comments
Mr.Grumpy
Mr.Grumpy

Neighborhood Markets are GROCERY STORES, period. They are smaller than most local chain stores like Tom Thumb or Kroger.The Highpointe neigborhood had a Food Lion store back before they pulled out of Texas. How terrible that people might get their food more cheaply and closer to home than they would otherwise. 

RTGolden1
RTGolden1 topcommenter

Walmart Neighborhood Markets have everything......, except what you need right that minute.

upfacing
upfacing

We'll, I'm not sure our social services are poised to handle the influx of poorly paid Walmart employees. More like Walmart could use three huge tax breaks!

holmantx
holmantx topcommenter

Dallas is the City Different.  We adopted the ForwardDallas! overlay based upon "Form Based Zoning"

http://www.dallascityhall.com/council_briefings/briefings1208/FormBasedZoning_12032008.pdf

What Crow asked for in their request, and what they so earnestly described and sought to comport with, was to adhere to the ForwardDallas! adopted plan and the Form Based Zoning mix.

What they want is a 130,000 Big Box, which is at variance with 29.5 pages of their request.

Form-Based Code - A form-based code is a land development regulation that fosters predictable built results and a high-quality public realm by using physical form (rather than separation of uses) as the organizing principle for the code. A form-based code is a regulation, not a mere guideline, adopted into city, town, or county law. A form-based code offers a powerful alternative to conventional zoning regulation.

Form-based codes address the relationship between building facades and the public realm, the form and mass of buildings in relation to one another, and the scale and types of streets and blocks. The regulations and standards in form-based codes are presented in both words and clearly drawn diagrams and other visuals. They are keyed to a regulating plan that designates the appropriate form and scale (and therefore, character) of development, rather than only distinctions in land-use types.

snip! 

So when you see a picture next to the definition of FBCs in the Dictionary (or 51A of the Dallas Development Code) . . .uh, the rendering of a Wal-Mart with the Gulf of Mexico in the background ain't it.


mavdog
mavdog topcommenter

To be fair, this is suburbia where Cedar Hill, Duncanville and Dallas all border each other. The fact the WM is situated in Cedar Hill just means their property lies within the city limits, the customers will be coming from all 3 cities.

Although food doesn't contribute the same sales tax revenue as most retail stores due to so much of what they sell being sales tax exempt, the citizens of Cedar Hill should be glad their City will benefit from WM locating inside their city limits. Each store should easily give $100-150,000 in sales tax revenue to the City.

CheeryBitch
CheeryBitch

Look at all the Wal Marts in Collin County. In one 20 mile radius there are 8+ Wal Marts and they have plans for at least two more in that same radius.

gabbahey
gabbahey

Why do they need more WM's? There are already THREE Super Walmarts within a 5 mile radius of the Cedar Hill WM on Beltline: one at Westmoreland and Beltline in DeSoto, another on Wheatland and I20 in Duncanville (and another down at I20 and 161).

pete
pete

So, Amy, are you going to tell us how many grocery stores (Walmart or otherwise) a city should have?

Rumpunch1
Rumpunch1

How about just opening up more than 3 registers at a time?  At that point, one Wal-Mart is more than enough. 

WylieH
WylieH

[Residents in the neighborhood near Haskell Avenue and Central Expressway recently won a restraining order to temporarily stop Trammell Crow from building a 130,000-square-foot Sam's Club nearby, in what was supposed to be a walkable development called the East Village.]

Yeah.... it's kind of a problem when Trammell Crow and City staff falsely tell residents and the City Plan Commission that they are seeking MU-3 zoning (which doesn't allow for retail in excess of 100,000 sf or home improvement stores) when, in fact, they are doing something entirely different.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@CheeryBitch

More locations = less driving. That means even more savings.

Montemalone
Montemalone topcommenter

@pete Just one.

And only one checkout open at any time.

ozonelarryb
ozonelarryb

Anywhere from sk8y8 to lebendymeben.

ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul
ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul topcommenter

@WylieH 

Can I go into in area, apply for an MU-3 zoning, but put a "notwithstanding" deep into the document that I can drill a gas well, will I be able to drill my well?

MaxNoDifference
MaxNoDifference

@WylieH I know you're better connected in this area than I am.  But I don't think that we've seen the end of this fiasco yet.

Sotiredofitall
Sotiredofitall topcommenter

@MaxNoDifference @pete Correct Sir -  "The Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything", calculated by an enormous supercomputer over a period of 7.5 million years.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@MaxNoDifference

Whatever number is optimum, double it for Colorado.

WylieH
WylieH

Court hearing Friday morning @ 9:30. Very good chance the neighbors will prevail.

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin topcommenter

@WylieH so is it possible they prevail, and then trammell and developers decide they want a 99,000 sq ft Wal Mart, Is that allowed?

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@ScotsMerkin

Not yet, but once the first big-box weed store opens in Denver, it's over for the little guys.

Tipster1908
Tipster1908

@ScottsMerkin @WylieH yes, but they also have requested a variance for a home improvement use, which is not allowed by right in the prior zoning. 

WylieH
WylieH

If they ultimately prevail, the entire rezoning is voided and reverts back to the prior zoning. I can't remember if retail is allowed under the prior use, but I believe so. If so, a 99,000 sf facility would be allowed. From what I understand, a smaller, urban-form Sam's Club, designed in a semi-competent manner, would be fine with these folks. The problem is the size and poor plan of Trammell Crow's current proposal.

primi_timpano
primi_timpano topcommenter

They appeal, but they are free to downsize

dingo
dingo

@TheRuddSki 

'big-box weed store'..

If you have to walk all the way to the back corner of the store, how can you be expected to remember what you came in for?

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@dingo

Bring a designated shopper.

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