No Vote On Proposed Wal-Mart In Vanderburgh County

Published 08/21 2014 11:12PM

Updated 08/21 2014 11:18PM

Still no vote on a proposed Wal-Mart in northern Vanderburgh County.

Wal-Mart and nearby neighbors, are not seeing eye to eye.

The Board of Zoning Appeals decides to hold off on a vote, yet again.

Wal-Mart hopes to build a new super-center at the intersection of East Boonville New Harmony Road and Highway 57.

Neighbors in the area know they can't stop the Wal-Mart from coming, but continue to push for some say on how it's built.

"This is not something that is going to add to our community. We feel like it's something that is going to take away from that whole aesthetic and natural feel out there," says Brenda Mobley.

Neighbors hold their ground at yet another Evansville Vanderburgh County Board of Zoning Appeals meeting as Wal-Mart makes its way into their community.

"Think of your home and think of a Wal-Mart right square across from it," says a neighbor.

At last month's meeting Wal-Mart brought forward three variances focusing on parking spots, landscaping, and signage.

Neighbor's listened to what Wal-Mart proposed, then made their own proposal asking Wal-Mart, and its attorney, to consider.

"We have been e-mailing back and forth quite a bit," says Mobley.

Some of those requests include asking for signs to be dim, so lights do not shine into their homes.

They also asked for a berm to divide homes from the super-center.

Wal-Mart's attorney says they don't want to be bad neighbors, and they're trying to be fair.

"We had some limited engagement with the neighbors. They did send us some comments to our first statement of commitments. We received those," says attorney Joseph Calderon.

Attorney Calderon says it's not been easy.

He says they reached out to neighbors hoping to meet, but were rejected.

Neighbors say they didn't have representation so they decided against it.

Wal-Mart reviewed the group's requests and presented the changes tonight.

"What we are willing to do is state and put in the commitment that the auto service will not be open past eight," says Calderon.

The board hears Wal-Mart's new list of commitments.

They propose things like: making sure all freestanding lights have LED lighting to minimize the glow, to minimize truck noise, and to make sure no bars, taverns, or nightclubs will be built on the extra lots.

Still, some were not happy asking the board to think carefully about what they approve.

"Be very mindful of all of the points they said tonight, because ultimately our lives are going to change as we know it. That's the bottom line," says Mobley.

"Keep in mind that if we vote the three variances down, Wal-Mart can still go ahead and build this building."

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