Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Friday, February 24, 2006


Hearing Examiner John Montgomery has denied PARD's appeals and ruled that the Wal-Mart Supercenter can proceed with a couple of minor conditions

More later.

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WSUStretch said...

From the Spokesman Review website:

Pullman hearing examiner approves Wal-Mart store
By Melodie Little
Staff writer
February 24, 2006

A hearing examiner gave Wal-Mart Stores Inc. the green light to build a supercenter in Pullman.

Hearing Examiner John Montgomery found no reason to deny the landowner’s property rights, saying that plans for the store don’t violate any reasonable laws.

A citizen’s group that opposed the store, the Pullman Alliance for Responsible Development, was disappointed in the ruling.

“Of course we oppose it. It’s not the right thing for our community,” said Christopher Lupke, a Washington State University professor and member of PARD.

The ruling capped over a year of battles to block the 223,000-square-foot supercenter from building in Pullman, a town of 25,000. PARD members gathered signatures from 9,600 people pledging not to shop or work at the store if it were built.

Like the property at 44th Avenue and Regal Street in South Spokane Wal-Mart is eyeing for a new store, a portion of the 28 acres of land where it will build in Pullman has what the ruling referred to as “seasonal wetlands.”

Montgomery listened to three days of testimony both for and against the project in January and waded through numerous written testimonies before ruling against PARD’s appeal and approving the project.

Conditions laid down include making road improvements, adding traffic lights and creating a buffer between the store and an adjacent cemetery.

Lupke said he was pleased that the hearing examiner supported those conditions.

“Without our efforts, these mitigations probably would not have been put forth in the first place,” Lupke said.

Lupke said he isn’t sure about the group’s next step.

Now comes the short clock on the appeal process. It should be obvious by now that there is no merit to their case that is worth wasting there $$ on. I would not be surprised to see them shift over to the Lowe's project in the corridor - but they wouldn't find the "support" they thought they had here in Pullman.

"Patiently" waiting for groundbreaking and additional positive events - finally. It remains worth the wait and the hours of work invested by all.

April E. Coggins said...

Tom will be on soon with more information but Chris Lupke's statement is ludicrous. PARD won nothing in this appeal, zero. They are now trying to take credit for things that were already in the site plan.

WSUStretch said...

Yea, I know - I wanted to get up what was posted to the web. No real new conditions, but they have to try to save face somehow...

Krem2 is reporting:

KREM 2 News has learned that Pullman’s city examiner has approved Wal-Mart’s application for a super center store. The examiner upheld the city’s original approval of a site plan, but says Wal-Mart must participate in improving streets in the area. Opponents have until March 20th to appeal.

April E. Coggins said...

Let's hope that PARD will do what is the right for the city and not file another hopeless appeal. The good news is that Wal-Mart can start building, even while an appeal is underway.