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Posts Tagged ‘Wal-Mart’

Another way to squeeze the payday lenders

I wholeheartedly approve of this. The Postal Service (USPS) could spare the most economically vulnerable Americans from dealing with predatory financial companies under a proposal endorsed over the weekend by Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA). “USPS could partner with banks to make a critical difference for millions of Americans who don’t have basic banking services because […]

One thing Wal-Mart could be good for

They could wreak havoc on payday lenders. Raj Date says that with modern data analysis banks could offer payday loans on much less extortionate terms. Felix Salmon retorts that banks don’t actually want to do business with poor people unless they can scrape them for high fees. Otherwise the costs of dealing with the accounts […]

Alexan Heights update

The developers of the Alexan Heights project on Yale will go before the Planning Commission tomorrow to get a variance that would remove a single-family restriction on part of the property. Some folks in the neighborhood have been petitioning against the variance. The Leader reports from a meeting that was supposed to be between residents […]

The Heights Wal-Mart is now open

On the plus side, the world did not come to an end. On the minus side, it’s still a lousy location for a Wal-Mart and a giant missed opportunity for better, more urban-oriented development. For nearly 2½ years, Heights-area residents fought against one of the largest corporations in the world, employing yard signs, meeting with […]

Yale Street Bridge to get makeover

You may recall that last November the load limit on the Yale Street Bridge was reduced by TxDOT to 8,000 lbs per single axle and 10,000 lbs per tandem axle, which has resulted in truck traffic being forbidden on the bridge. That hasn’t stopped trucks from actually using it, of course, but they’re not supposed […]

Wayside Wal-Mart update

From Nancy Sarnoff: The East End of Houston has been called a “food desert” for its lack of grocery stores. But come next year, the area will be a little less dry. Wal-Mart Stores said it will open a store at the corner of Interstate 45 and Wayside around the middle of next year. The […]

Yale Street Bridge load limit reduced by TxDOT

This hit my inbox on Wednesday afternoon: Yale Street Bridge Load Limit Reduced by TxDOT A recent assessment of the Yale Street Bridge over White Oak Bayou performed by the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDot) has resulted in a reduction in the bridge’s maximum traffic load rating. The assessment was performed under the state’s program […]

On getting to walkable urbanism

This story about neighborhood opposition to the Kroger 380 agreement doesn’t quite get at what I think are the key issues that need to be discussed. [O]pponents of both the Wal-Mart and Kroger deals say suburban-style big-box stores don’t fit a widely-held urban vision for Washington Avenue Corridor. They’d like to see more incentives offered […]

More thoughts on the Mayoral election

I think there are two key things to keep in mind when contemplating Tuesday’s election results in Houston and what they may mean for 2013. First and foremost, I believe you have to see the Mayor’s percentage of the vote, which everyone would agree was underwhelming, as a reflection on her level of support and […]

RUDH files suit over 380 agreements

From the inbox: RUDH has filed a petition in Harris County District Court challenging the legality of a six million dollar tax reimbursement deal between the City of Houston and Ainbinder Heights, LLC, the developer of the Houston Heights area Walmart Supercenter strip mall development. RUDH alleges that the deal violates section 380 of the […]

Studemont Kroger update

The Heights Life brings news about the proposed Kroger at Studemont and I-10. Of particular interest is this bit: The property on which Kroger plans to build lies on the east side of Studemont north of Arne’s. The store will be at the south end of the property, facing the main customer parking lot to […]

Since we’ve been speaking of drainage

Meanwhile, over in Washington Heights, Ainbinder is doing a commissioning a study of streets and drainage. It’s their second study, as apparently they didn’t like what the first one told them. Go read They Are Building A Wal-Mart On My Street for the details.

Heights Wal-Mart public meeting reminder

From the inbox: Responsible Urban Development for Houston [RUDH] Announces their next: PUBLIC MEETING: TUESDAY MAY 3RD, 2011 AT 6:30 PM The Council on Alcohol and Drugs 303 Jackson Hill Street, Houston, Texas 77007 Regarding: Heights Wal-Mart Project and the Yale Street Bridge over White Oak Bayou WHAT: Alarm Bells are sounding in the Heights […]

Public meeting with updates on Wal-Mart

From RUDH: PUBLIC MEETING: SEE YOU THERE! Join RUDH and receive updates about the Yale Street bridge, the Bass Street connection and TxDOTs role in ensuring the safety of West End residents, the City’s plan for re-routing 18-wheelers onto Heights Boulevard and what is known about drainage to date.  Now is the time to set […]

Can we take a step forward without also taking one back?

From last week’s Texas Tribune on the subject of plastic bag recycling. On Tuesday the Senate’s Committee on Natural Resources heard testimony on a bill sponsored by the committee’s chairman, state Sen. Troy Fraser, R-Horseshoe Bay, that would require large retailers like Wal-Mart to have well-labeled bag recycling canisters in their stores. This afternoon the […]

I-10 service road update

From Ultimate Heights: Two of six planned detention ponds are under construction near Interstate 10 east of Patterson Street, along with new feeder roads between Shepherd and Taylor. Work on the project began in October, with the first two detention ponds scheduled for completion near the end of this year, two Texas Department of Transportation […]

The Wayside Wal-Mart

For what it’s worth, I don’t have an opinion about the new Wal-Mart at I-45 and Wayside, whether it’s a Super Center or not. Other than a few comments at Swamplot and on the Stop Heights Wal-Mart Facebook page, I haven’t seen any evidence of an uproar from the nearby Idylwood neighborhood. If there is […]

The Ainbinder traffic impact analysis for the Height Wal-Mart

When last we discussed the Heights Wal-Mart development, we were awaiting a traffic impact analysis (TIA) on the roads around the site, which was to be done on behalf of Ainbinder, the developer of the project. For your perusal, here is the TIA of the Wal-Mart development. I want to quote you a paragraph from […]

Why HEB is not like Wal-Mart

I read this story about how residents near the old Wilshire Village Apartments site, where HEB plans to build a new store, will be voting on possible designs for that new store, and I wondered what might have been. Residents who live near the corner of Alabama and Dunlavy, the site of an H-E-B scheduled […]

Email counts, too

I have one thing to say about this. City officials involved in negotiating a tax reimbursement deal with the developer of a controversial Walmart-anchored retail project near Washington Avenue made dismissive, and sometimes derisive, references to citizens opposed to the development, according to e-mails released to the Houston Chronicle. For example, in response to a […]

What if they built it someplace else?

For better or worse, the argument against the Washington Heights Wal-Mart mostly boils down to the fact that it’s an inappropriate location for a suburban-style big-box store. There are also concerns about traffic, and about the nature of Wal-Mart, both in terms of its business practices and its 24/7 operations, all of which have helped […]

Council approves the Wal-Mart 380 agreement

No surprise. Over strong neighborhood objections, City Council this morning passed a package of economic development incentives worth more than $6 million for the developer of a future Walmart store near the Heights. City Councilwoman Anne Clutterbuck offered two amendments to the agreement with Ainbinder Co., strictly limiting the potential taxpayer reimbursements to the company […]

RUDH recommendations to the city

Whether you think the Stop Heights Wal-Mart effort is a righteous cause or the annoying whine of a bunch of fancypants elitists, I recommend you go check out this post to read the recommendations made by Responsible Urban Development for Houston to the city for how they would like to see the site get developed. […]

What could be done with the Wal-Mart site instead

If you read through my previous post, you may be wondering “if not Wal-Mart there, then what?” For that, I turn to Andrew Burleson, wearing his President of the Houston Chapter of the Congress for the New Urbanism hat, who makes a proposal to the Mayor and Council about what should be built at the […]

Falkenberg’s Wal-Mart strawman

Where to even begin with this bizarre Lisa Falkenberg column? I’ll probably get banned from my favorite Heights coffee house for saying so, and it’s not that I’m a fan of Walmart. Some of their business practices led me years ago to avoid shopping there if I can avoid it. I’m fortunate enough to have […]

The 380 agreement

Here’s the proposed 380 agreement between the city and Ainbinder for the site now known as “Washington Heights”. It’s all fairly dense legalese, and I confess my eyes glazed over while reading it. If there’s something in here that’s unexpected or unusual, I’ll have to leave it to someone with greater fortitude than I have […]

SN22 public forum and panel discussion about the Wal-Mart

From the inbox: OPPORTUNITIES AND INCENTIVES FOR RETAIL DEVELOPMENT IN THE URBAN CORE: A PUBLIC FORUM AND PANEL DISCUSSION PLANNED IN LIGHT OF MAYOR PARKER’S INTENT TO PROVIDE TAX INCENTIVES FOR A SHOPPING CENTER ON YALE STREET AT KOEHLER (HEIGHTS WALMART) (Houston) – On Monday evening, September 13, 2010, the Washington Avenue-Memorial Park Super Neighborhood […]

Another Wal-Mart meeting

There was another meeting about the proposed Wal-Mart on Wednesday, this time for residents only. [I]n the second public meeting in eight days addressing concerns over the Walmart-Ainbinder Company development, the city’s proposed 380 Agreement with the developers took center stage. The 380 Agreement is a statewide compensation program, which would reimburse the developer building […]

Videos of the city’s Wal-Mart presentation from last week

You can see three videos on Mayor Parker’s YouTube channel from last week’s meeting at the GRB to discuss the Wal-Mart development on Yale. This includes the Mayor’s opening remarks and the city’s slide show presentation, a bit less than 30 minutes in all. Give it a look if you want to prepare for tomorrow […]

The next Wal-Mart public meeting

From the inbox: Mayor Annise Parker Cordially invites you to attend A 2nd public meeting regarding the Koehler Street Development Wednesday, September 1, 2010 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. High School for Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice 4701 Dickson Street Auditorium Houston, TX 77007 You are cordially invited to attend a 2nd public meeting regarding […]

The Wal-Mart meeting at the GRB

Lots of sound and fury, that’s for sure. The city is negotiating a deal with the developer of Washington Heights — a proposed Walmart-anchored shopping center near Interstate 10 and Yale – that would reimburse the local builder for as much as $6 million in public infrastructure improvements. If the agreement is approved, developer Ainbinder […]

There’s supporters, and then there’s “supporters”

This Chron story is about “supporters and opponents” of the “Heights” Wal-Mart debuting their webpages. See if you can spot the problem with this: The opponents, led by a group of concerned citizens who began organizing around a Facebook website in mid-July, have formed the nonprofit group Responsible Urban Development for Houston. “We are a […]

Public meeting regarding Koehler Street Development

From the inbox: Public Meeting Regarding Koehler Street Development Mayor Annise Parker Cordially invites you to attend A public meeting regarding the Koehler Street Development Wednesday, August 25, 2010 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. George R. Brown Convention Center 1001 Avenida de las Americas Room 370 Houston, TX 77010 You are cordially invited to attend […]

CultureMap previews the Wal-Mart

Some interesting stuff here. Restaurants and stores on Heights Boulevard, along with new pathways and landscaping on the boulevard’s esplanade, will be part of Ainbinder Company’s Walmart-anchored retail development in the Inner Loop of Houston, the developer of the project said Friday. The project, called Washington Heights, is planned for 23 acres near the southwest […]