Comment 2435

By adrian (registered) | Posted November 30, 2006 at 09:44:07

Something useful will come of this if we make a big stink and change people's minds about the issue.

I have no problem with new business coming to Hamilton (in fact we encourage that here on RTH), and I am not an anti-Walmart ideologue, although I take issue with some of their policies, particularly the way they have treated their workers in the past.

I just don't understand why we need to develop our city in this way. Strip malls suck. They are ugly and unpractical and most everybody avoids them unless they absolutely have to. Why can't we build storefronts and businesses in such a way that they fit in with their surroundings and encourage some kind of urban participation? Why is it that "window-shopping" and "strip mall" are rarely used in the same sentence?

There is a McDonald's in Venice. As you might imagine, it is not some pre-fab 50% plastic construction with a drivethrough. It's in an old building in the heart of the city and it's identifiable simply because there is the distinctive M on the front. But it remarkably manages to fit in with its surroundings.

By all means, Wal-Mart and assorted hangers-on, come to Hamilton. Come downtown, we could especially use you there. But for the love of this city's architecture, inhabitants and geography, please do it in the right way. Don't burden us with yet another sprawling, steaming pile of depressing shit.

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