Midtown Miami residents fear Walmart would destroy growth in pedestrians

July 17, 2012 04:34PM

A rendering of a Walmart in Midtown Miami

Despite not having filed any plans to build on a site located between 30th and 31st streets in Midtown Miami, the idea of a Walmart within the city has provoked controversy, the Miami New Times reported. During a meeting yesterday in Roberto Clemente Park, Miami residents met to discuss a rezoning proposal that would allow loading bays on North Miami Avenue and thereby make way for the retail giant who has recently been engaged in informal talks with the city.

Opponants are worried that a Walmart would destroy the area’s developing urban neighborhood by congesting streets and diverting business away from local shops. Supporters argue that the retailer would reduce prices on essentials goods and create jobs.

Jacob Pfeffer, a Walmart opponent and local business owner at Monday’s meeting asked, “How does this affect our pedestrian neighborhood? Midtown is going to become more like a strip mall.”

The city’s Planning, Zoning, and Appeals Board will review the proposal Wednesday and the city commissioners could vote on the issue as soon as Thursday. [Miami New Times]Christopher Cameron