DALLAS -- Wal-Mart Stores' bid to build an urban supercenter near downtown was derailed when the Dallas Plan Commission unanimously rejected the Bentonville, Ark.-based retailer's plans for the radical two-story concept store, labeling it an "oversized guerrilla."
The defeat was fueled by a powerful grassroots coalition of neighborhood groups that was opposed to Wal-Mart's mammoth plans to squeeze a 220,000 square-foot store onto an 11-acre tract of land that abuts residential developments.
The coalition feared the store would cause massive traffic jams, increase auto accidents and cause overflow traffic to divert through private neighborhoods, increasing crime and endangering pedestrians.
Wal-Mart spokeswoman Daphne Moore said the company was very disappointed and was still evaluating its options, including redrawing the blueprints for the project yet one more time in an attempt to placate neighbors and salvage the project, and then formally appeal the proposal to the Dallas City Council.
To overturn the Plan Commission decision, at least three-fourths of the City Council must approve Wal-Mart's request for a zoning change.