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Residents Should Clean Up Before Protesting Walmart

A Medlock Park resident says people protesting Walmart should look around at their community and pick up a rake before demanding higher-standard alternatives to the ubiquitous international retailer.

North Druid Hills-Briarcliff Patch welcomes letters from readers. Send them to jonathan.cribbs@patch.com.

While I am not a fan of Walmart, this area desperately needs tax revenue and revitalization. Suburban Plaza is dying, and this area needs to jump-start with a major retailer. I would love to see a mixed use development with unique stores there, but the demographics don't support it. If the support were there, it would be going there as opposed to Clifton Road across from the Centers for Disease Control. Residents opposing the development need to get over it because, truthfully, the bad element they fear is already milling about Suburban Plaza. I'm sorry to say this, but this neighborhood isn't affluent enough to support this area on property tax alone. They can take their pick at this point: Walmart or decreasing home values with increased taxes. If some of these people want to take pride in the area, they should start with cleaning up the curb appeal of their own homes. This neighborhood desperately needs some of that!

The empty car lots and Suburban Plaza are eyesores killing this area. I would love a Trader Joe's, but this is the economic reality. Residents opposing Walmart need to drive by Clifton Road and look at the demographics of that area and realize that area supports that kind of development. Developers run serious numbers on an area before building and actually drive through neighborhoods. Costco would have been a great addition. But unhappy residents should drive over to Brookhaven, look at the neighborhood that Costco went into and grab a paintbrush and some hedge clippers and invest a little sweat equity in their own properties if they want those kinds of businesses. I take a lot of pride in my home and wish others would do the same. The people who have made downtown Decatur, Brookhaven, Oakhurst, Lake Claire and Virginia-Highland have made those neighborhoods desirable by investing in their own properties!

Jennifer Moore
Medlock Park

~ HHS ~ March 12, 2012 at 02:17 AM
Wow! Mr. Cribbs, you brought a whole new perspective to the issue! You hit the issue right on the nose! As a property owner of several rental homes in the area, it is very hard to find tenants in the area that keep their yards tidy. However, we have made a good effort by putting upkeep a requirement in their lease. We charge extra if we have to send a landscaper to keep it up for them. But, obviously, many do not do this. The better the neighborhoods look, the better tenants you will get-- residentially AND commercially. Then, this debate about Wal-Mart would not be necessary. Trader Joes and other businesses would be beating down the doors to Suburban Plaza. Awesome Article-- Note to self-- ::Contact tenants to make sure yards are being maintained.:: -- Although, it should be a given. -- Everyone gets lazy now and then. Other note to self-- ::Spruce up my own yard!::
Jonathan Cribbs March 12, 2012 at 03:42 AM
It's important to note I didn't write the article, HHS. It's a letter to the editor. Jennifer Moore wrote the letter. You will never see me offering an opinion on an issue like this. I'm merely the conduit through which some of these opinions travel to their audience.
N.G. March 12, 2012 at 06:03 PM
I live in Medlock Park and actually blame a lot of the unkempt houses on the fact that they are rental homes. The owners are not making any kind of real investment to upgrade, or even upkeep, their yards, landscaping, gutters, paint, mailboxes, etc. I wish it was not a neighborhood that is as poached by people like HHS as it is. When I bought my house 5 years ago, I immediately threw $10,000 into my front landscaping. You'll never see HHS doing that. It's those types of capital investments that improve property values, not complaining about your tenants who don't rake your leaves. You are exactly the problem with Medlock -- 45% rental homes!!
~ HHS ~ March 12, 2012 at 11:48 PM
NG ...dont assume that all rental owners are alike. It is not just the tenants not caring for their homes..it is those living in their own homes too. We keep our houses in excellent shape. Our medlock house so happens to have just been completely renovated. And it was well OVER 10k. We bought this house 30 years ago...it was rental then too. So we did not poach your neighborhood. If you didnt want a rental environment, you should not have chosen close to a huge university.
~ HHS ~ March 12, 2012 at 11:54 PM
Also, many of those unkept homes are elderly on limited income. Perhaps start a group to work on helping those folks rather than assume you know they are all tenants/landlords.

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