The Vancouver Scrum

On the move!

Agh! You’re still here? My new site and weblog, is now up and running; new posts are building up over there, never to be mirrored here. Go! What are you waiting for? All the stuff worth keeping has been migrated over to the new server, and I don’t anticipate making any more posts here.

Bloggers and webmasters: Update your links! Simply replace with in your blogrolls or bookmarks to point to the new site. Old posts will remain on this server for as long as the people at Blogger/Google allow them to remain; unfortunately, I’m not going to bother to come up with any way of converting permalinks on this blog to their corresponding posts on the new site. Yes, I plead laziness. I also realize the irony of switching away from Blogger just it starts to add features that the demanding blog nerds insist upon.

Thanks for reading and linking, and see you over at!

—Ian King, December 13, 2004

Wednesday, July 31, 2002

Arglebargle or foofaraw?

Vancouver city council has approved a "retail impact study" about a proposed Wal-Mart store in Vancouver, to be located on Southeast Marine Drive. This brings Wal-Mart one step closer to setting up shop in Vancouver.

Well, whoop-de-do. A lot of locals were setting their hair on fire about the stores impact on the local community. I've got news for them: Southeast Marine is one of the few places where Wal-Mart can fit in. It's proposed to be built on the site of a car dealership. The whole area is a sea of asphalt, with big box-like operations all over. There's warehouses, car dealers, and light industry all over. Wal-Mart would no more alter the character of the area than would another espresso bar on Commercial Drive, or an antique shop on Main Street.

I'm a goddamned bleeding heart. I dislike most of the city fathers who voted to OK this report. I prefer local neighbourhood shopping, and supporting local businesses. I detest the way that Wal-mart does business. So why do I support their efforts to set up shop in the city of Vancouver?

People from Vancouver are heading to Burnaby or Richmond to shop at Wal-Mart. If they could shop at one in Vancouver, they'd drive less. Kiss the argument that a Wal-Mart would increase traffic in general goodbye.

While I don't like Wal-Mart and would likely not shop there, why should the City prevent others from setting up shop. If enough people in Vancouver don't shop there, Wal-Mart will pull out. They have no interest in running an economically unfeasible store.

And, once again, this part of Vancouver is not unsuitable for a Wal-Mart. If Wal-Mart were crazy enough to propose a store for Kerrisdale or Commercial Drive, I'd have problems with it. However, the economics of those areas are unsuitable for Wal-Mart, so it's all hypothetical.

You can read the retail impact study here. Advance warning: This is a PDF document, so you will need Adobe Acrobat to read it.
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