Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Whole Foods Mess Might Benefit Tawa

“Planned market is likely to create a mess for traffic” was the title of my November letter to the editor. I opposed the proposal to build a Whole Foods at the Bull’s Head intersection because I anticipated traffic problems. I’m big fan of some of the Bull’s Head businesses: Tawa, Grunberger Jewelers, Hawley-Lane shoes, Four Corners liquor store. Initially, I wanted to protect them by trashing the Whole Foods proposal. Now, I’m not so sure. Maybe a WF will help local businesses by bringing more “traffic”- uh, shoppers!- to the area. Besides the Super Stop and Shop, I can’t see what other businesses the WF complex would threaten.

My main concern was Tawa, home of the fantastic, spicy, well-priced lunch buffet. I viewed the Whole Foods prepared food section as a threat, but now I believe that WF parking hell will benefit Tawa.

Update 6/5/08: Whole Foods proposal was withdrawn.

Hungry people will drive toward Whole Foods, see traffic spilling out of the poorly-designed turn lanes, and think, What the @&!*?!? What kind of idiot designed this place? Then they’ll spot Tawa, and think, Indian food! I haven’t had Indian food in a while! A $9.95 buffet is worth a try! I think they’ll be pulled toward Tawa, where they can sit and eat with their co-workers. They will realize that a buffet is quick, too, and much more satisfying than eating bland food out of a plastic container.

I have not completely decided if I’m for or against WF, because I know cities need to change and grow. I’m going to the zoning board meeting tomorrow, because I’m pretty sure the proposal will go through, so I want to hear what plan the developers DO have for traffic flow. The meeting is at 7pm, tomorrow, Thursday Jan. 24, at our beloved yet misunderstood 888 Wash. Fourth floor. See the Smart Growth for Bull's Head website for more specific details on the plan.

Oh- for all you shameless Whole Foods proponents? Let me remind you, because all those organic cheese puffs may have gone to your head, that Whole Foods will be accompanied by a parking garage. I may be able to accept the garage IF parking is free. If I have to pay for parking, and that money goes to anyone besides the coffers of my beloved city, I will be a bitter woman. Not only will my evening ride home be fraught with traffic, traffic made up of aggressive people who want artisanal bread, I’ll know that someone who already has money is making more money with their ugly parking garage and irritating retail complex.

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