Raytown Walmart clears big hurdle after 8-hour Board of Aldermen meeting

RAYTOWN, Mo. - After hours of debate into the early morning hours, the Raytown Board of Aldermen finally voted in favor of a controversial development for its downtown area.

Aldermen voted 6-4 to rezone a 4.5-acre lot, allowing Walmart to build a Neighborhood Market grocery store. Walmart still needs to pass several obstacles, including site plan approval, before the project is officially approved.

Aldermen heard testimony from several residents before finally voting at 3 a.m. on Wednesday. The meeting started eight hours earlier.

Many in the community oppose the project because they believe the land is better suited for a traditional "town square" type atmosphere, which has been envisioned in Raytown for years.

Opponents believe Walmart is a temporary fix for the lot, located at East 62nd Street and Blue Ridge Boulevard.

Raytown city officials announced Walmart's grocery store meets the majority of design standards for the downtown area. Walmart's attorney said the company is working on meeting even more.

The project has its supporter as well, who believe the Walmart Neighborhood Market would attract more shoppers to the area, bring in sales tax revenue and provide jobs for the community.

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