Walmart could get a major competitor in Williston where Target is exploring the idea of building a new store. Representatives from Target have met with a number of town leaders in Williston. The discussions are being described as preliminary, but shoppers and people living near the possible site are already weighing the pros and cons.
Deborha Sprano Francis was excited about it, "I actually can't wait for it to come in."
In recent weeks, town leaders have met with reps from the big box retailer to discuss the possibility of building a 135,000-square-foot store just off Route 2 near the Best Buy and Shaw's.
Sprano Francis explained why she was happy about the idea: "Cheaper prices, I have heard they have a lot of cheaper prices than other places have and it will be easier for us that are on low-income housing."
The 3-acre store would sit on a 26-acre site that was most recently home to the Williston driving range.
Williston Planning and Zoning Director Ken Belliveau spoke on the possible growth. "This is a town that in my opinion really tries to do it right in terms of supporting development that's compact, we don't just want to sprawl out anywhere, we want to preserve open space."
Belliveau says the property would need to be rezoned before the store could be built. Developers would have to show how the project would support affordable housing and jobs, as well as its impact on traffic.
Sprano Francis pointed out one downfall of the idea, "It is going to be hard as far as too much traffic. Right now the kids aren't even allowed to ride their bikes in the parking lot because of the traffic coming in and out.
Families living near the proposed site say they are concerned the Target could dramatically impact limited green space.
Nikia Drown of Williston said, "The kids really don't have much area to play in now, so I am kind of worried about how it is going to effect my children."
Town selectmen will have the final say on whether a Target moves forward, but if you're already planning your shopping list, sit tight, Even if the project is approved, it could be a long time before shovels hit this field.
Belliveau added, "Don't hold your breath, most likely we would be talking about, if we are successful in getting approval from the town, we would be looking at something that would be at least a few years down the road."
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