The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has fined the developers of a Wal-Mart project in Kilbuck Township, Pennsylvania, $497,000 — the maximum allowed by law — following a landslide along Route 65 that Sprawl-Busters has reported on earlier. The landslide closed the Ohio River Boulevard for two weeks in September, and inconveniences thousands of commuters, and many local businesses along the way. The developers still haven’t stabilized the site, and the state says that the developer, Kilbuck Properties, must stabilize the site immediately. The DEP order also included a firm timeline for the project, daily monitoring of the property and reporting requirements for the development of a permanent site stability plan. “This is a wake-up call to Kilbuck Properties that they must take immediate, effective action to stabilize this property a DEP spokesman said. Meanwhile, Wal-Mart will just lift up its skirts and quietly tiptoe off the scene.
Wal-Mart’s site literally caved in all around it in Kilbuck. We have reported that the retailer is now looking for other sites in the Kilbuck area, but local residents say the legacy of this project, and the negative impact of Wal-Mart’s role in it, will stay with the public for many years. The good news is that the proposed Wal-Mart on this site has been buried in its own dirt. Citizen groups often try to nail the coffin on Wal-Mart supercenters, but here’s one case where the retailer dug its own grave. For earlier stories, search Newsflash by “Kilbuck.”