Maine Passes Law Requiring Economic Impact Studies of Big-Box Projects

Date: 18 Jun 2007 | posted in: Retail | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

The Maine legislature has given its approval to a bill that requires cities and towns to evaluate the economic effects of large-scale retail development and to approve only those projects that will not have an adverse impact on jobs, local businesses, and municipal finances. The legislation is the first of its kind in the nation.… Read More

Weighing the Economic Impact of Big-Box Development

Date: 5 Apr 2007 | posted in: Retail | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Many local officials would undoubtedly reconsider big-box projects if they knew that a new mega-store would eliminate more jobs than it creates, or that it would cost the city more in public services than it generates in tax revenue . But most cities do not assess the likely economic impacts of retail development. They assume that these stores expand the local economy and approve them blind to the potential costs. Legislation under consideration in Maine would remedy this by stipulating that cities may approve stores over 75,000 square feet only after an independent economic analysis is conducted.… Read More

Acres for Wal-Mart

Date: 21 Apr 2005 | posted in: Retail | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Known for squeezing every last dime out of employees and suppliers, Wal-Mart has even managed to get a rock-bottom deal on corporate green-washing. My local newspaper, the Portland (Maine) Press Herald, reported last week, in glowing front-page coverage, that an effort to protect a tract of northern forestland from development had "taken a huge step forward thanks to Wal-Mart. Similar stories of treasured lands gaining protection with help from Wal-Mart ran in hundreds of newspapers across the country under such headlines as Wal-Mart grant will help fund Squaw Creek conservation plan, and Wal-Mart to aid in effort to protect Grand Canyon.… Read More

Massive Retail Expansion Could Harm Maine’s Economy

Date: 11 Jan 2004 | posted in: Retail | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Developers have announced plans to construct well over 2 million square feet of large retail stores in Maine over the coming months. Wal-Mart is planning a supercenter in Westbrook and perhaps another in Topsham. Lowe’s building supply is aiming at Brunswick. A 460,000-square-foot project, including Lowe’s and Target, is slated for Biddeford. HomeDepot has a site in Topsham. More than 900,000 square feet of retail is planned for Augusta, including a Lowe’s superstore and an expansion of The Marketplace that will house Best Buy, Kohl’s and others. And with the defeat of two zoning ordinance amendments in Kennebunk, that town may soon have a Stop & Shop supermarket. … Read More

Midcoast Maine Residents Oppose Coastal Home Depot

Date: 1 Feb 2003 | posted in: Retail | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Residents of the midcoast region of Maine are petitioning the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and the US Coast Guard to deny permits to a planned Home Depot store in the town of Rockland. The 100,000-square-foot store is slated for a 24-acre site along the coast near Route 1. The project was approved by the Rockland Planning Commission in October. It still needs permits from the DEP, which is accepting public comment through February and is expected to issue a decision in March. … Read More

Surveys Find Local Pharmacies Cheaper than Chains

Date: 1 Nov 2002 | posted in: Retail | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

In October, the Maine Department of Human Services released its third annual survey of prescription prices for fifteen common drugs at 106 independent and chain pharmacies statewide. The ten lowest priced pharmacies (based on the cost of all fifteen drugs combined) were all locally owned drugstores. National chains, including Rite Aid, CVS, and Brooks, had among the highest overall costs.… Read More

Big Box Opponents Win Two, Lose One on Election Day

Date: 1 Nov 2002 | posted in: Retail | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Home Depot suffered a resounding defeat at the ballot box in Talbot County, Maryland, on Tuesday in what residents hope will be the company’s final attempt to build one of its giant stores in this rural Eastern Shore community. In 1999, after Home Depot and other big box retailers proposed stores in the town of Easton, the City Council enacted a big box moratorium and subsequently adopted an ordinance barring stores over 65,000 square feet. … Read More

Big Box Moratorium on Ballot in Ellsworth, Maine

Date: 1 Aug 2002 | posted in: Retail | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

A grassroots group, Citizens Organized for Responsible Development (CORD), in Ellsworth, Maine, has gathered the 1,109 signatures needed to place a measure calling for a temporary moratorium on new retail development on the November ballot. If it passes, the referendum will suspend construction of retail stores larger than 80,000 square feet on undeveloped land and commercial expansion of more than 40,000 square feet on developed land for a period of six months. … Read More

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