Letters to the Editor

Store needed

August 6, 2008


To the editor:

Are there any plans to build a Super Wal-Mart or put a grocery store in northeast Lawrence? There is absolutely nothing here north of the bridge.

I live in Jefferson County and don't like the drive south or west of Lawrence. There's so much traffic coming and going through northeast Lawrence that it would only make sense to have a business that would actually benefit the public. It is too bad with all the empty buildings that are run down, and sitting idle. What's up with them? They sure aren't doing the community any service.

Then you have the price of gas. Who wants to drive any farther than they have to. Come on, people, wake up and fight for some local stores that would serve us all. A Wal-Mart in northeast Lawrence, would mean one stop on the way home from Lawrence. The community should work harder and make their wants known.

Genie LaDuke,


glcookie06 9 years, 8 months ago

moan and groan..you can't please everyone!!

Piggles 9 years, 8 months ago

I don't live in North Lawrence, but I do agree that they really could use a grocery store on that side of town. The closest two would be Dillon's on mass st and the Dillons at 6th and Lawrence Ave. I also think with the south east part of town growing they could really use a grocery store there too- again the closet two would be Dillon's on mass st and Checkers on 23rd and louisiana- I also wish they put in some kind of Capital Federal ATM out that way- off 23rd/ K-10. When I need to get money i have to drive out of my way to Target as that is the closest to where i live. Oh well. . . maybe one day??

cato_the_elder 9 years, 8 months ago

A truck stop on the order of BETO Junction in the Tanger Mall location would have been a much better use of that property than the failed outlet mall, and given its location would have been good for North Lawrence and quite profitable for its owners to boot.

Oracle_of_Rhode 9 years, 8 months ago

We're already up to our neck in Wal-Marts here. Why doesn't some enterprising North Lawrencian start a community market? They just opened the People's Market in East Lawrence, which also is under-served. Perhaps a People's Market North?

stuckinthemiddle 9 years, 8 months ago

I'm sure if they thought that they could make big money north of the river Wal-mart and/or any number of big box stores would open shop...my guess is that the possibilities have been researched and it was determined that there just isn't enough buying power in North Lawrence to justify such development...

Wendy magillicutty 9 years, 8 months ago

possibly people don't want to make a dangerous left turn off of 2nd street with no protection from traffic. we pass by every business out of fear. Sonic and BK are turn offs. tee hee.

Satirical 9 years, 8 months ago

I want a Wal-mart next door to my house. Make it happen government or else!!! (sarcasm intended)

yellowdot99 9 years, 8 months ago

For the past 40 years I have watched stores go in and stores closes up in North Lawrence. Many different stores from small to large have tried and none of them were chain stores. It takes alot of money to get a business going and they are not there jsut for the fun of it they have to make money, which means customers. Needless to say other than Sonic and a terrible BurgerKing 98 percent of them have died a quick death and are gone. I would say North Lawrence has proved itself a bad risk and in these bad times we are having now, probably no one is going to take that risk for a long time to come.

OnlyTheOne 9 years, 8 months ago

Well folks let's be real honest here.You had a store in North Lawrence and you didn't support it!It was more fun to cross the bridge and go to the (at that time) yuppie Dillons.Well ya got what ya paid for.

nannette 9 years, 8 months ago

we do need a grocery store and other little retail stores in north lawrence.. why does this town act like we don't even exist?..I don't like having to go clear across the other side of town just to pick up a gallon of milk due to the gas prices .

januarygirl 9 years, 8 months ago


notajayhawk 9 years, 8 months ago

scott3460 (Anonymous) says: "No one wants an anti American store like Walmart in North Lawrence. If you don't like the cost of gas, vote for a candidate that will get us off our addiction to oil, or move closer to town. No one likes a hypocrite who choses to live somewhere and then begins the whining about how inconvenient it is. Shopping at and supporting your local neighbors is a more responsible thing to do anyway. You ought to try it."Wow, quite a rant, even from scott.Ya' think it's just possible the LTE writer has lived where he has since long before the development he speaks of on other areas existed, and he's just asking why it's not happening in other areas that obviously have high traffic? And maybe there simply aren't any local businesses that grew up near where he lives?By the way, scott, which candidate are you referring to - the one that just said we should open up the strategic oil reserves? How is that getting us off our addiction to oil? (And why is it not a 'gimmick' like he refers to his opponents proposal to suspend the federal gasoline tax?)

Scott Drummond 9 years, 8 months ago

"The community should work harder and make their wants known." No one wants an anti American store like Walmart in North Lawrence. If you don't like the cost of gas, vote for a candidate that will get us off our addiction to oil, or move closer to town. No one likes a hypocrite who choses to live somewhere and then begins the whining about how inconvenient it is. Shopping at and supporting your local neighbors is a more responsible thing to do anyway. You ought to try it.

hail2oldku 9 years, 8 months ago

"All the people with money own property in South and West Lawrence."There is plenty of people with money owning the property that would be choice for the development that the LTE writer desires. The problem is the companies that could make a run of it in N. Lawrence have crunched the numbers and know that it wouldn't be profitable.Jim Lewis made the statement to me several years ago that the reason he sold out of North Lawrence is because the people wouldn't shop there. He had customers from NL coming to his Checker's store because the prices were better. The prices were better because he could have a bigger store with better buying power.

geniusmannumber1 9 years, 8 months ago

I'm completely unsurprised that so many people seem to think that the city is responsible for bringing in stores and putting them in specific locations. The ignorance is would be astounding if it were not so commonplace.scootterxlch pretty much has his finger on the pulse here. (Well, I have a minor quibble with the misuse of the word "blogger", but other than that.)

jafs 9 years, 8 months ago

Anyone who thinks that Wal-Marts are a great example of the free market needs to think more deeply about the issue.Huge corporations like Wal-Mart are almost impossible for smaller retailers to compete with, thus eliminating one of the pre-requisites for a free market.In addition, they have managed to define themselves in such a way that anti-trust regulations won't apply to them, even though they should.Also, they have demonstrated a tendency to force themselves on communities that don't want them via their huge legal budget.For a good even-handed analysis of Wal-Mart, I recommend the book "Wal-Mart: The Bully of Bentonville", by a Wall Street Journal writer.

Satirical 9 years, 8 months ago

I know what people in North Lawrence desperately need; a store that sells soap.

countrygirl 9 years, 8 months ago

Genie--there's a very nice Wal-mart in north Topeka and it's probably not any farther away from you in Oskie than one in North Lawrence would be. It's right across the street from a brand new Dillons and there's lots of other shops and restaurants just a stone's throw away on Topeka Blvd.

twaldaisy 9 years, 8 months ago

Oh and back on the subject of the LTE, yes NL needs some retail stores over there.

glcookie06 9 years, 8 months ago

Walmart or Any other grocery store... the point is that north east lawrence needs a store over there. w/ walmart having the larger store chain, they can afford to build. w/ the smaller stores that were in business couldn't swing it. money talks....its the fuel in life. and i'm not talking gasoline. you don't have money you might look like the people in oskaloosa

SettingTheRecordStraight 9 years, 8 months ago

I'm very excited about the Wal Mart going in at 6th and Wak! To the LTE writer, I say, good job. Keep your ideas flowing. If the market demands a Wal Mart in north Lawrence and if we have city and county commissioners not hell-bent on protecting their Earth Liberation Front base, free enterprise will flourish in north Lawrence.

acg 9 years, 8 months ago

I agree that the cheap foreign made crap is in every store, so what's the diff between Walmart or Target, but I take exception to your comment re: encouraging how their employees vote, twaldaisy. See link. I have a friend who worked in the walmart distribution facility in Ottawa for a while. He said they had monthly meetings that lasted 2 hours wherein the employes were constantly warned about the dangers of unions and democrats and all of those other ugly little ills that could topple their kingdom. Walmart is evil. Everyone knows it. It just so happens that our current economic crisis has us over a barrell. Would I prefer to shop at mom & pop? You betchya! Can I afford it when comparing prices? Sadly, no.http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/08/01/wal-mart-warns-workers-of_n_116279.html

Bossa_Nova 9 years, 8 months ago

how about we put a Nordstroms in north lawrence?

Satirical 9 years, 8 months ago

I heard a report on NPR that other day about how Walmart is fighting diseases in 3rd world countries by increasing food safety (I think the report was from somewhere in Central America). The reason is because Walmart has high standards when purchasing local produce to have low bateria count and low on pesticides. This lowers disease and illnesses in these countries. Walmart also pay more for the produce than the growers could get at the local market. Consumers shop there because they can save time by getting all their grocery items in one store rather than going to numerous markets; and because they have assurance they won't get sick from their purchases. This benefits everybody, the farmers, the consumers and Walmart. But no one is suppose to talk about how Walmart and the free market is often the solution to world problems. No, no, the inefficient and wasteful government is the only solution....

number3of5 9 years, 8 months ago

GeniePutting a Walmart in North Lawrence is not the answer. Instead we need smaller stores with a friendlier atmosphere and home town service. A grocery store, a drug store, a hardware, a fabric shop are the types of things needed in North Lawrence, not a super center by the greedy Walmart conglomerate.

acg 9 years, 8 months ago

There are tons of people who would clearly like an anything in N. Lawrence. I have several friends who live in that area and they get tired of having to drive clear across town for anything at all. Unless you want to see some naked chicks, buy some liquor or get a pack of smokes, there's nothing in N. Lawrence. And to whomever said the BK in N. Lawrence was awful, boy do I second that statement. That's the dirtiest, slowest, most run-down fast food joint I've ever seen. I can't imagine why they're still open.

dandelion 9 years, 8 months ago

The reason there won't be a Wal Mart in North Lawrence is because Compton and his WakiPak buddies don't own any property over there. The developers don't own anything in North Lawrence; therefore, North Lawrence does not exist in the eyes of our present city government.

Scott Drummond 9 years, 8 months ago

"Wow, quite a rant, even from scott."Not really, just stating a fact. Walmart, as we have seen in the news recently, attempts to browbeat their employees/serfs in to voting in support of Walmart's corporate interests. Further, the company that at one time trumpeted it's Buy American intiatives now seels mainly cheap, nonAmerican goods, thereby hurting the American worker. Both issues I think, puts WallyWorld squarely in the anti-American camp. Obama's strategic oil reserve proposal is not intended to solve our addiction. I believe he has made it clear that it is a step that the government can, and should, take to ease the extreme stress being placed on the American worker and economy by the obscenely high prices for gasoline. bush has no interests in doing anything of the sort, of course, because that will interfere with his plans to hold American's over the barrel to extract additional amounts of our public treasure for his private business buddies in the oil and gas industry.

Phil Minkin 9 years, 8 months ago

When asked why he robbed banks, Willie Sutton replied: "That's where the money is!" His son is now marketing director for Wal-Mart.

classclown 9 years, 8 months ago

Shhhhh! We don't talk about North Lawrence. We pretend it doesn't exist for some reason.

twaldaisy 9 years, 8 months ago

JAFS please explain the anti-trust not applying to Walmart. I know at one time Walmart wanted to get into banking, but was not allowed to by the powers that be. Not sure if that could be considered anti-trust. I don't have a good grasp on anti-trust.

kansaskev61 9 years, 8 months ago

Genie,If we put usable, successful stores in North Lawrence, then folks would pull off the turnpike, shop and then get back on the turnpike without ever experiencing this lovely city that is "The People's Republic of Douglas County". You would'nt stop at the overpriced specialty shops on Mass Street. You couldn't experience the pot hole riddled streets, the ridiculous traffic or the lovely prestigeous over hyped west side. Not to mention a drive by of one of the nations most liberal, left wing overblown University's. Alas poor Genie, you'll just have to drive a little further to Topeka or risk it by entering the inner sactum that is Lawrence Kansas

Richard Heckler 9 years, 8 months ago

"GeniePutting a Walmart in North Lawrence is not the answer. Instead we need smaller stores with a friendlier atmosphere and home town service. A grocery store, a drug store, a hardware, a fabric shop are the types of things needed in North Lawrence, not a super center by the greedy Walmart conglomerate."So true. If a laundromat, as North Lawrence has requested, was added to the list Tanger Mall would likely work instead of working against taxpayers due to blight and and tons of empty space. That list above is what draws people to a retail center. All centers with either a hardware and/or a grocery store bring in substantial traffic. Maybe Lawrence property owners want too much money for the space? Genie... North Lawrence residents are wayyy ahead of you on your list of requests. No doubt they are cheering on your request. They have asked for a grocery,hardware(with informed employees) and a laundromat frequently.

twaldaisy 9 years, 8 months ago

I am so tired of reading how Walmart doesn't buy American made products. Guess what neither does Target, Kohl's or any other store. The same name brands that I buy at Walmart are at Target and come from the same place...China/Taiwan/India/Mexico. Big business, i.e, manufacturers have all outsourced their work, not just Walmart. Thing is I can afford to buy the brand name products at Walmart, but not at HyVee or Dillon's or Target. And do you really think that Walmart can and does encourage employees on how to vote, you really are a conspiracy theorist and need to adjust your tinfoil hat.

acg 9 years, 8 months ago

No, ya'll don't want to have to go to Oskaloosa to shop, seriously. I live near there and it's like deliverance every time I go into that town for whatever reason. I took my kids to the Oskie fair this year and the carnies were cleaner and had more teeth than most of the residents I saw. Too creepy.

Jim Phillips 9 years, 8 months ago

And let's not forget about the wonderful traffic signals here in town. I just love sitting at a red light for at least two minutes when there is no cross trafic.

bevy 9 years, 8 months ago

I heard they are putting a Dollar General in in Oskaloosa, in the place of the great mom&pop cafe that was there just a few months ago. Sad...

tangential_reasoners_anonymous 9 years, 8 months ago

Maybe North Lawrence just needs an image boost.I propose... "Upper Lawrence"

yellowdot99 9 years, 8 months ago

twaldaisy you can count on one hand how many products are still made in American and soon where won't be any left to count. If you want a good job now a days you need a passport.

twaldaisy 9 years, 8 months ago

ACG well I guess propaganda is propaganda no matter the source. However, there is no way that Walmart would ever know who or what you voted for. So let them spout their propaganda and, quite frankly, if the person can't do their own thing then they are a drone and will jump off a bridge when told to. And 2 hour meetings means you are relaxing and not working, so listen to them and go on. Watching t.v. or listening to radio and those wonderful totally true political commercials are trying to tell us how to vote too. However, I do get the point that a corporation is "encouraging" certain voting, but again, no way for them to know, so vote whomever you desire.

exhawktown 9 years, 8 months ago

ACG: Too bad the Oskies didn't run you out of their town with your arrogant, snotty attitude. Not everyone can afford to shop at AU MARCHE, nor do they all necessarily want to. It takes all kinds. . . even yours. But your kind. . . can stay in Lawrence. Thanks.

glcookie06 9 years, 8 months ago

i say in the future that the city needs to clean up "NORTH' Lawrence. It is hard not to include N.L w/ the rest of the town since the river seems to divide it?? It is to bad that the grocery stores that were there couldn't make it. The point is they didn't have the money to keep them going. It is going to take a major chain store's to get NL afloat.

Yabut 9 years, 8 months ago

nannette (Anonymous) says:... why does this town act like we don't even exist?Yabut says .... Maybe because those of you who live in north Lawrence insist on capitalizing "North" as if it's officially part of it's name, indicating a separate city from the rest of Lawrence (like North KC actually is)? You only want to be considered part of Lawrence when it suits you.

BigPrune 9 years, 8 months ago

North Lawrence doesn't have the population. It already had a grocery store under several ownerships that kept going out of business. It's now the Harley Davidson dealership. Tanger Outlet Mall offered many different kinds of businesses that all went out of business.North Lawrence just doesn't have the population to support a grocery store or a discount store. Facts is facts. History is history. Being located next to I-70 certainly didn't help bring in the business either.

loloen 9 years, 8 months ago

tangential_reasoners_anonymous (Anonymous) says:Maybe North Lawrence just needs an image boost.I propose: "Upper Lawrence"I love it! I, too, live in N. Law and my husband and I have frequently talked about the need for a grocery store up here.Not that this would EVER happen in a million years, but I would like to see that old outlet mall turned into a premium movie theater like The Warren chain down in Wichita. I bet if you put a really NICE movie theater unlike the one down South, you would see all sorts of business boom in N. Law. More restaurants, more places to shop, a grocery store etc. With the economy the way it is, now is not the time to try it of course, but maybe when it picks up in a few years. N. Law is not the way it used to be. With housing prices so ridiculous in this town, many young, hard working couples are choosing to live where it's more affordable so they can have money to spend on other things like entertainment! Two cents. Flame on. Point being, if there were a grocery store on this side of town, I'd shop there and so would many N. Law residents. As to the flooding concerns, I live on Locust. We are not in the flood zone. I did not have to buy flood insurance, so I can't see how a business out by the turnpike would possibly in a flood zone either. If you can enlighten me, I'd appreciate it.

Dixie Jones 9 years, 8 months ago

i would have to say genie doesnt push for a walmart in oskie cause she knows that wont happen in a small town that is that close to topeka or lawrence. As for her going to topeka to shop well yes that would be out of her way if she works in lawrence. i too am a jeff co resident and frequent lawrence and would love to see SOMETHING go into north lawrence. something to brighten up and add some life to that side of town. have a awesome day !

jayhawkjg 9 years, 8 months ago

North Lawrence was in line for a Cracker Barrel when Tanger went in, the sign ordinance kept them out, that is why we do not have business in North Lawrence, There is not enough insentive to build here. We lost our grocery store after the 93 flood. They just could not recover.

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