Put on your hip boots, shoppers. Wal-Mart wants to build a supercenterin the floodplains of Amherst, New York, and the residents think the plan is all wet. Residents in Amherst submitted the following update to Sprawl-Busters from their community: “Wal-Mart is trying to get a site plan for a new Supercenter approved to be built near the corner of New Rd and Millersport Highway in Amherst, NY. This would be wrong on so many levels. Most of the property is in the 100 year floodplain of Ransom Creek and development in this area would upset the delicate balance of flooding and stormwater drainage in the entire region. Amherst is an area with poorly drained soils, septic tanks and stormwater ditches. Sanitary and stormwater drainage problems already exist here. This area also has no large retail areas, so traffic and sprawl are only beginning to affect these areas, which are mainly residential and rural. AWal-Mart development in this are will bring people, which brings other retail development, which brings more traffic and further sprawl. There are already 2 Wal-Mart facilities in or near Amherst: A supercenter on Transit Road only miles from this site and another large Wal-Mart on Niagara Falls Blvd, not far from this site. These stores are on the outer Western and Eastern boundaries of Amherst. The proposed site would be near the Northern border. There is also a Wal-Mart south of Amherst in Cheektowaga. This is possibly being put forth now before the new Supervisor and Town board can complete the process of developing limits on new development, especially in floodplains and wetland areas.
When Wal-Mart starts building rubber stores, it will be fair game for floodplains. But until that time, the Walp-Mart Realty should look for dry land instead, and stay out of floodplains, wetlands, aquifers, and riverfronts. We need these ecosystems more than we need another Wal-Mart supercenter. For contacts in Amherst, New York, contact [email protected]