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Featured Article filed under Independent Business | Written by Stacy Mitchell | No Comments | Updated on Apr 1, 2014

Two Big-Box Decisions Show How Smart Planning Policies Protect Good Jobs

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/smart-planning-policies-protect-good-jobs-cities-vote-big-boxes/

Although few cities take full advantage of them, planning and zoning powers are among the most potent tools communities have for shaping their economies. Two recent decisions, in Massachusetts and Wisconsin, underscore why land use planning matters and how smart policies can strengthen the local economy and protect good jobs. Continue reading

Cape Cod
Featured Article filed under Independent Business | Written by Stacy Mitchell | No Comments | Updated on Jul 1, 2013

Here’s One Smart Way to Handle Big-Box Stores

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/heres-smart-handle-big-box-stores/

Cape Cod is the rare community that considers regional economic impacts when weighing big-box retail development, and that makes all the difference. Continue reading

Article filed under Independent Business | Written by Stacy Mitchell | 6 Comments | Updated on Jul 26, 2005

Home Depot, Lowe’s Squeeze Independent Contractors

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/home-depot-lowes-squeeze-independent-contractors/

Independent remodeling businesses are being increasingly squeezed by Home Depot and Lowe’s. Having captured nearly half of all hardware and building supply sales nationally, the two chains are now expanding aggressively into installation services. Continue reading

Article filed under Independent Business | Written by Stacy Mitchell | 1 Comment | Updated on Feb 24, 2005

Big-Box Dropped from Portland Redevelopment Project

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/bigbox-dropped-portland-redevelopment-project/

Responding to intense public pressure, developers in a three-way competition to redevelop a site on the east side of Portland, Oregon, have dropped plans to include big-box retail in their projects. The Portland Development Commission has been considering proposals to redevelop five city blocks at the base of the Burnside Bridgehead east of the Willamette River. Continue reading

Article filed under Independent Business | Written by Stacy Mitchell | No Comments | Updated on Dec 15, 2004

California court voids approvals for two big-box projects

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/california-court-voids-approvals-two-bigbox-projects/

In a ruling that could have broad implications, a California appeals court this week nullified zoning approvals given to two big-box shopping centers by the city of Bakersfield. The court held that the environmental impact reports (EIRs) prepared for the projects were insufficient and did not adequately address the potential for urban decay and associated ecological effects that could be caused by extensive new retail development. The ruling orders the city to complete new impact studies and public hearings, and reconsider the projects. Continue reading

Article filed under Independent Business | Written by Stacy Mitchell | No Comments | Updated on Apr 1, 2004

Scottsdale Voters Overturn Big Box Subsidy

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/scottsdale-voters-overturn-big-box-subsidy/

In March, voters in Scottsdale, Arizona, overwhelmingly rejected a plan to provide a massive public subsidy for a 42-acre big box development anchored by a Wal-Mart supercenter and a Lowe’s Home Improvement store. The plan, which was approved by the city council last year, allowed the developer to keep 49 percent of all the sales taxes generated by the shopping center over the next 40 years. Accounting for interest and inflation, the total value of the subsidy is estimated at $183 million. Continue reading

Article filed under Independent Business | Written by Stacy Mitchell | No Comments | Updated on Nov 1, 2003

Austin Coalition Forces Wal-Mart Retreat, City Agrees to Big Box Study

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/austin-coalition-forces-walmart-retreat-city-agrees-big-box-study/

Faced with strong opposition from a broad array of organizations and residents, Wal-Mart has abandoned plans to build a 24-hour supercenter on an ecologically sensitive site in southwest Austin. The 43-acre wooded tract sits over the Edwards Aquifer, the largest underground reservoir in Texas. It feeds Barton Springs and supplies drinking water to thousands of people. Initially, opposition to Wal-Mart centered on its choice of location and the impact polluted parking lot runoff would have on the aquifer. Continue reading

Article filed under Independent Business | Written by Stacy Mitchell | No Comments | Updated on Jul 1, 2003

Coalition Fights Massive Big Box Subsidy in Arizona

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/coalition-fights-massive-big-box-subsidy-arizona/

In July, the Scottsdale, Arizona, City Council voted 4-3 to approve one of the largest subsidies ever given to a big box retail development. Those voting in the minority described the subsidy, which could amount to as much as $183 million over 40 years, as "obscene" and "insane." The 600,000-square-foot development includes a Wal-Mart, Sam’s Club, and Lowe’s Home Improvement store. The project is slated for a 42-acre site occupied by a derelict mall in south Scottsdale. Continue reading