Needless to say, people are angry.
This is demonstrated by this article by Wonder Woman, which I republish here with her full permission:
Residents of Milwaukee’s Bronzeville neighborhood and city officials are expressing outrage that a Dollar Tree store is opening at W. North Ave. and N. King Drive, instead of the full-service grocery store that had been promised.
At a meeting of about 80 residents last week, District 6 Ald. Milele Coggs said she will work with residents and city officials to try to stop the dollar store.
“Let’s be real clear. This is what was presented to me for a year and half,” she said, holding up a rendering that read “M.L.K. Supermarket.”
Then two weeks ago the “coming soon” banner went up over a new Dollar Tree sign, she said.
“We can’t stand for a bait and switch,” Rocky Marcoux, commissioner of the Milwaukee Department of City Development, told the crowd. “We are very, very upset about what’s happened here.”
He said he’s exploring what action the city might take, but the property is zoned for retail.
“Dollar Tree is a reputable national retailer, but that’s not what we wanted at this location,” he said.
The corner, which was occupied by a Walgreen’s that has moved to a new location, was supposed to be an independently operated, locally owned grocery store, and that’s what property owner Anup “Andy” Khullar promised, he said.
The city helped Khullar put together a loan through the Milwaukee Economic Development Corp., a nonprofit that works closely with the city to put together low-interest loans.
“It’s a critical location and a significant corner,” Marcoux said.
Again the Black Community was promised…
The problem with the Dollar Tree moving in on the corner of MLK and North Avenue is that we were told that the business would most likely be a Black owned grocery store. It would help the community, the Bronzeville community, “sankofa” (reach back) and connect to its roots of its former self and continue the trend of growing a Black Economy in the area. We could promote Black business and empower the Black community that has been dying in this economy. Our mayor is stuck on choo choo trains, forestry, cleaning up, and etc… and refuses to do much to help Blacks find employment or $$ opportunity. Alderwoman Coggs has been a one woman force going it alone and here we see her going it alone in this fight too. WHERE IS OUR MAYOR????
We do not want a Dollar Tree on the corner of MLK & North Avenue! Bronzeville was specifically designed to energize and stimulate the Black economy in the inner city. Dear mayor you have to continue to nurture that. You cannot turn your back on that or us. We want what we were promised and we want Mayor Barrett to get involved and make this right. Dollar Tree is a very community destructive business. It is not Bronzeville worthy. It wants to bring tobacco and harmful products to the community, as well as crime and violence. It is also not Black owned. Thankfully Alderwoman Coggs shut down liquor licensing which is why the deal with Mr. Khullar took a turn for the worse to begin with. He found out he could not turn the corner of MLK & North into another hustle. This is why Khullar took his low-interest government loan and gave it to Dollar Tree . Dollar Tree was more than happy to take the money and bring in their cheap products and canned food. We want fresh fruit, meats and quality goods just like everyone else!! We won’t settle for crap and if Mayor Barrett and Dollar Tree think the community is going to stand for this we are planning to Nate Turner this one on ya.
So be warned we are taking the fight to you and we are about done with talk. Maybe you want to live by violence and all the things Dollar Tree brings with it. Maybe it is time you experience what we have to live with! I know one thing; this Dollar Tree may open because it swooped in too fast for anyone to do anything legally to stop it. But if this mayor does not help Alderwoman Coggs to close it and restore the promises made to our community, he will regret the day. Is this city already not stressful enough for you? Or do you need more things on the city agenda? MPD? FPC? Hello? As for Dollar Tree , we all know what it is and what it stands for. Sure desperate folks will patronize it, rob it, and rob those who work in it and those shopping in it. However I urge everyone to take a stand and show you have an ounce of respect. Take your money, quest, whatever the hell and go down the street to Growing Power!! Black Owned!!!
Stay out that damn store Kings and Queens!!!!
And by the way since our county supervisors are part of the economic process it sure would be great if they stepped in and offered assistance, and where is Willie Hines in all of this? Seems to me that Alderwoman Coggs should not be fighting this battle all by herself when we have all these Black elected willing and able. You all made promises right? State elected you all are almost out of session so you have time to come help too!!
Funny when Chris Larson wants something from Negros he is here fast and in a hurry but when we need something he is m.i.a. Well Senator, where ya at? So Black elected time to get behind the esteemed Alderwoman and back her up!!! #BLACKAGENDA!!