Wal-Mart Coming To Johnson City

By Justin Moss

July 22, 2010 Updated May 10, 2007 at 7:04 PM EDT

Chris Coleman likes his quiet, Rogers Street neighborhood.

But he and his neighbors are bracing for the noise that could come with a new shopping plaza.

The big draw, retail giant Wal-Mart.

"They got a park right there for the kids and everything and you're talking about a huge store and other stores with more traffic," says Coleman.

"Not glad to see it, not good for us neighbors here, too much congestion and traffic," says Chester Kolota of Johnson City.

"Most of the small businesses around here are struggling, small retail businesses and stuff like that are a thing of the past, due to places like Wal-Mart," says Tyler Brown of Johnson City.

Not everyone is so concerned.

George Trencansky lives right across from the site on CFJ Boulevard, and is looking for a convenient place to shop.

"Bring jobs, tax money in the area, good for me, I'll go right across the street to do my shopping," says Trencansky.

Developer Marc Newman says the project will be a big benefit because his company is turning this old factory site into useful retail space.

And he says, Wal-Mart will generate big tax revenue for the village.

Mayor Harry Lewis says Wal-Mart will probably get some tax breaks because the land is an Empire Zone.

But Lewis says the retail giant will help stir up other business.

"I'd hope that maybe people take a ride downtown, some of the small stores can capture a little business on it," says Lewis.

The plans will now work their way through the village, which Lewis says will take months.

Developers hope to begin construction sometime next spring.

Newman Development Group says the Johnson City Wal-Mart would be around half the size of the Vestal Supercenter.

Mayor Lewis says the village is also looking at reconstructing CFJ Boulevard to handle more vehicles.

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