Big-box stores like Wal-Mart are detrimental in many ways to our quality of life. In 1998 Home Depot and Wal-Mart built more than 250 new stores, adding 33+million feet of retail space to America. Here's the argument against sprawl, made by the website Sprawlbusters:
"Sprawl" is defined by the National Trust for Historic Preservation as "poorly planned, low-density, auto-oriented development that spreads out from the center of communities." The 10 sins of retail sprawl
* It destroys the economic and environmental value of land
* It encourages an inefficient land-use pattern that is very expensive to serve. * It fosters redundant competition between local governments, an economic war of tax incentives. * It forces costly infrastructure development at the edge of towns. * It causes disinvestment from established core commercial areas. * It requires the use of public tax support for revitalizing rundown core areas. * It degrades the visual, aesthetic character of local communities. * It lowers the value of other commercial and residential property, reducing public revenues. * It weakens the sense of place and community cohesiveness. * It masquerades as a form of economic development.
Wal-Mart is not alone in contributing to sprawl, but Wal-Mart is far worse in its evil practices and ill effects than any other retail company.
Wal-Mart is not just the world's largest retailer. It's the world's largest company--bigger than ExxonMobil, General Motors, and General Electric. The scale can be hard to absorb. Wal-Mart sold $244.5 billion worth of goods...