Plans for Main Street Walmart Expected In 60 Days

Village Board approves streamlined process that will allow quick development

Conceptual plans for a Walmart Neighborhood Market store could be submitted within the next 60 days, said Matt Carran, the director of community development for Menomonee Falls.

The Village Board unanimously Monday approved ordinance changes that will streamline the procedure for the redevelopment of a 12-acre strip mall that has been going downhill since the mid-1990s. The mall is located on the south side of Main Street between Pilgrim Road and Rozanne Drive.

The major change is the ordinance dropped requirements for a dense residential development to be built atop commercial properties.

"If a developer follows the ordinance, they can get the project approved quickly," Carran said.

In  2006, plans for a mixed-used development on the property were adopted. Trustee Michael McDonald, also a member of the Plan Commission, said the high-density residential portion of the plans are not suitable for the area. Carran interjected that economics, not the suitability of the residential plans, were responsible for the lack of movement on the property.

"Mixed-use developments have had a difficult time getting financing," Carran explained after the meeting.

The strip mall has had a difficult time since the mid-1990s, when the Marcus Corp. built a new cinema off Appleton Ave.

"The mall just lost its draw," Carran said, adding that the next blow came with the closing of the Piggly Wiggly at the west  end of the mall.

The Gatlin Development Co., which builds Walmarts around the country, is interested in the property. A year or two ago, Walmart began opening smaller grocery only stores in other parts of the country and there are now about 180. If plans for this site go through, this will be the first of these neighborhood groceries in Wisconsin, Carran said.

In February, Gatlin withdrew a rezoning request to build a 115,000-square-foot store at Pilgrim and Lisbon roads. Neighborhood stores are about 40,000-square-feet.

The amended ordinance also allow for the development of several restaurants ranging in size from 6,000 square feet to 22,000 square feet.

In a related development Monday, the Milwaukee Plan Commission recommended approval of a 40,000-square-foot Walmart Neighborhood Market near Wisconsin State Fair Park, according to the Journal Sentinel's Tom Daykin. That project also would be developed by Gatlin.

ann May 17, 2011 at 03:47 AM
What kind of people is that?
Douglas Wilde May 17, 2011 at 05:00 AM
alot of people dont like superstores this project will entail sum great new retailers and will not have a walmart look to it this will be a 20 million dollar project which wiill jump start main street nobody wants it to b an eye sore 4 another 10 years this will b a great retail center when completed
brian May 17, 2011 at 04:08 PM
Moving in 5 years ago to the Falls, I was sorry to see that I had missed the days of yore. any development is a wonderful thing for this area. Too many supermarkets in the area, perhaps, but I don't see other retail busting down the doors of the Village to build here. I say, build it, and they will come, and then more retail will come.
Cindy May 17, 2011 at 05:55 PM
Since it is only groceries and not a full Walmart, I think it's a great idea! The Falls needs businesses, we need the tax base. We could also use the restaurants. So many businesses are going to Germantown, we need them on this side of the freeway. Of course, then Falls will need to step up snow plowing in winter along the major streets, hopefully the taxbase would help pay for that though.
Ryan May 17, 2011 at 06:38 PM
Why do you think so many of these businesses have left the area or gone out of business? It's because the community has allowed the big box national chains to take over the town! Don't forget the businesses that are being forced out of the mall because Wally world can do whatever it wants. Drive around town and look at all the vacant buildings, do you still think another grocery store is the answer? Why would a 6th grocery location help? Its not! Going to eventually drive out the locally owned stores like Karls or Sentry. We really need to think about this one.
Tracy May 17, 2011 at 06:53 PM
I agree, there are already enough grocery stores in the area! And yes, Walmart does attract a less than desireable element. Don't take that the wrong way, take it as a fact, and read the crime reports. I agree, that space could be put to better use. That whole area is becoming dilapitated, why not rejuvinate it with something more upscale and visitor friendly? Aside from DiMarini's, Emery's and Otto's, there's not much worth keeping in that area.
Erin May 17, 2011 at 07:09 PM
I could not agree with you more Tracy
Barb V May 17, 2011 at 07:52 PM
I'd like to know something...where ARE those Police Reports about crime at Walmart that everybody is talking about? The one's I see talk about car break ins at the Marcus, DWI's, shoplifters at Fleet Farm...Don't get me wrong, I am not a Walmart fan, but I really don't think that store in GT has caused a huge uptick in crime. I drive past there MANY time a week and never see police cars or lights. I also shop there in the evening, which is the most convenient time for me and no one else is open. Again, no police. They don't even have a security guard wandering around, so the crime rate can't be too high.
ann May 17, 2011 at 08:25 PM
Also if you read the latest articles it is about Target thefts not Walmart! Anything is an improvement than the empty buildings we now have there.
Holly May 17, 2011 at 09:10 PM
What will happen to the existing business'? Will they have to leave or will they get first pick of a new store in the the new mall?
Douglas Wilde May 18, 2011 at 12:44 AM
ottwait till u see the development planos and friends of nature stays the rest will b torn down also a new facade 4 ottos and fon also schlaskies will have a new look
pete zielinski May 18, 2011 at 04:48 PM
What about A Cut Ahead?
Michael May 18, 2011 at 07:08 PM
Agree completely, except for "along major streets." NOT being another major Walmart (Germantown does have that--but MF used to...oh, yes, someone else made that point.) Walmart wouldn't put 2 major stores that close, and yes maybe ANOTHER food store may not be ideal, but neither is leaving current zoning and eyesore of a location in place for 5 more years isn't really an alternative. Disagree that Sentry would be forced out of business; think that Walmart clientele would be new to area or come from Pick'n Save or the GT Walmart. Sentry customers likely remain loyal to Sentry.
Douglas Wilde May 18, 2011 at 08:56 PM
what about friends of nature a 20 year tenant??/????????????
#1 son May 20, 2011 at 04:40 AM
@Sara, Tracy and Erin- Your bigotted comments sadden me. Barb Valley, thanks for stepping up!
Cx2plusE@aol.com May 20, 2011 at 08:52 AM
Good idea, we need a food store at that end of the Falls.


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