The saga of the Midtown Walmart rages on. Walmart's latest zoning change request, for its hotly contested future midtown store, is for loading dock access on N. Miami Avenue, where the store frontage will span two full city blocks. Walmart had originally wanted loading docks on Midtown Boulevard, Midtown's main pedestrian spine, to vehement local opposition, and finally withdrew that request for the current proposal, which many find only slightly less onerous.
Renderings released earlier by Walmart show a midtown store in a generically mediterranean revival style similar to current Midtown construction. They have kept the majority of their plan secret. A google maps screenshot shows N. Miami Ave on the left, and the slanted road on the right is Midtown Boulevard.
Loading docks are currently only allowed on Midtown's east-west streets between 29th and 34 streets, keeping delivery trucks off of main pedestrian and commercial thoroughfares. And so far that's worked well for current large retailers like Sports Authority, Petsmart, and Loehmann's (although admittedly not as large as Walmart will be). Then, there is one consolidated loading entrance for Target, Ross, and Marshall's between 34th and 36th streets because of that block's lack of side streets, which Walmart has been using as an example of the "pedestrian friendly" design approach they would use, but the dark and ominous opening isn't very inviting. And it's hard to imagine how Walmart could do any better.
· Zoning proposal reignites debate over Midtown Miami Walmart [Miami Herald]
· Midtown Walmart [exMiami]