Proposed Wal-Mart Supercenter Sparks Concern Over Privacy, Flooding - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

2/2/05-Tyler

Proposed Wal-Mart Supercenter Sparks Concern Over Privacy, Flooding

Folks who live in one Tyler neighborhood aren't thrilled with a neighbor that's moving in. A Wal-Mart Supercenter is slated to be built near the intersection of Troup Highway and Shiloh Road. It will be adjacent to a neighborhood full of families and some retirees who say not only will their home values go down, but they're concerned about their privacy and even flooding.

"This has always been a very quiet neighborhood. One thing we learned is that when Wal-Mart wants to come in, they're going to come in," says Jennifer Burris, who lives on Commanche Trail. Soon she'll look out her window and see the Supercenter, but for now, it's just a plot of land.

"I'd like to see them leave some of the trees, so not all we'll see is Wal-Mart," she says.

Once a golf driving range, the quiet land will be replaced with a noisy parking lot. Jan Wood is worried about privacy, even though Wal-Mart has proposed a six-foot wooden fence.

"We don't think six feet is adequate. We'd like a rock fence instead of a wood fence," she says.

The worry is over water too. A stream just a few feet deep is the lowest point in elevation in this entire neighborhood. When the Wal-Mart is paved, all the water not diverted to this small stream might end up in the neighbors' yards.

"I have had water in my house a couple of times because of the existing drainage," Wood says. She has some drains in her yard, but in a downpour, water can still get in.

"It's got to go somewhere and it can't go in the ground when you've got concrete. It's got to flow. Unless they address the issue, we will just have more water in our houses when they concrete the area."

Neighbors say Wal-Mart hasn't proposed a solution for drainage, though Tyler's Planning and Zoning Commission was told retention ponds are a possibility.

Decker Kennington says he can live with it -- that having a Supercenter can be a good thing.

"I'm not against progress. Sure, they'll be a good neighbor. They'll bring in a lot of people who will shop not only their store but other stores."

These folks all say Wal-Mart will move here. It's just a matter of how good a neighbor the store can be.

We tried to contact a Tyler consulting firm today that's acting on behalf of Wal-Mart before the Planning and Zoning Commission. Our calls were not returned.

The matter of the new Wal-Mart Supercenter will be taken up by the Tyler City Council later this month.

Reported by Morgan Palmer.

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