Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Walmart is a' coming to the District
It is officially being announced today that Walmart is coming to the District of Columbia. Walmart has been in talks with the city for a while now in bringing its stores to the city. Today we learned DC will get 6 stores. A bit of overkill to me personally speaking. I was happy with 3, each being spread out across the city.
Even with 6 Walmarts in DC, I have found from living in the south the best, well-stocked Walmarts are always in the burbs. I wonder will quality matter though, with 6 Walmarts existing in "one city". Moreover, how will this affect traffic? DC, just released today, is in a region with horrible traffic delays. Will Walmart add to that problem? Well we will not know the answer to these questions until all the stores actually open, in a couple years I would imagine as some sites need serious redevelopment (Skyland). Speaking of Skyland, the final push for a Walmart East of the Anacostia River was brought to new light today. The Skyland shopping center has been fighting the city government for years over an imminent domain battle, with Skyland arguing historic preservation. But let's be real the stores in the area are way over priced (Discount Mart) and serve little use to the public other than a liquor store on the far end and a auto repair store attached to a Department of Employment Office. The other question, with a more obvious answer, is will Walmart drive small businesses out of the city? As we have seen in many areas around the country, "mom and pop" stores stand no chance to the mighty corporation. In addition, will Walmart pay decent wages to DC RESIDENTS? It is nice to have a job but can you afford to live in DC on a Walmart salary? I hope that Walmart will bring much needed economic development while investing in the communities it is about to enter.