Beechwood Residents Protest City Allowing Mini Markets in their Neighborhood
Dozens of members of the Beechwood Neighborhood Association protested at the city's Zoning Board of Appeals meeting this morning at City Hall.
That's as Mayor Lovely Warren called for a temporary freeze on so-called high impact retail stores in the city.
Kyle Crandall is president of the neighborhood group.
He says the Zoning Board has ruled against the will of the neighborhood by recently approving two corner stores in the area.
Crandall says mini-markets that don't run a clean business become a magnet for crime.
One of the city's first homicides of the year took place at a mini market on the city's northeast side.
Crandall says his group has asked the Mayor to attend their February meeting and outline plans the city has to address crime in and around mini markets, and to bring current mini-markets up to zoning regulations and shut down those that aren't in alignment with regulations.
He says the last thing the neighborhood needs is more mini markets, and the Zoning Board has approved two in the last 13 months.
City Hall spokesman James Smith says Mayor Warren has been working on the issue of so-called high impact retail stores since she was a member of City Council.
Smith maintains the mayor's proposal for a freeze on so-called "high impact" retail stores is not an immediate reaction to the recent homicide at a mini market on the city's northeast side.
He says a mini mart was recently approved for that neighborhood, but the homicide took place at a pre-existing establishment that has been there a long time.