Friday, October 2, 2009

Armory Supermarket Debate Raging

For those who haven't been following, you should really check out our post on Morton Williams' fight against the proposed supermarket at the Kingsbridge Armory.

We've got nearly 30 comments debating both for and against a new supermarket at the Armory. Just this morning we've updated the post with the following statement we received from CB7 District Manager Fernando Tirado in direct response to Morton Williams:
Unfortunately, Avi Kaner's argument against a big-box supermarket opening up in the Armory doesn't hold water. No matter what Mr. Kaner's beliefs, the fact remains that obesity and diabetes continue to rise within our community and many Bronx residents find themselves forced to shop outside of our borough to find fresh and affordable groceries.

I applaud MW Supermarkets for their recent changes, but the truth of the matter is that the community as a whole still does not have quality supermarkets. I find the opposition to a supermarket in the Armory to be anti-democratic and anti-free market at the expense of the surrounding community. I hope that we can still come up with an alternative that brings healthier and affordable options to the Northwest Bronx.

Fernando P. Tirado
District Manager
Bronx Community Board 7
We couldn't have said it any better ourselves, Mr. Tirado.



Ryan said...

Well said, Mr. Tirado!!!

Guywithacause said...

I could not agree more with the CB District Manager. Morton Williams does not care about the community, they care about their bottom line. They are OK with competition, so long as it doesn't actually compete with them. They claim they have been here for 50 years, have "good union jobs", and provide the community with plenty of products and services. So you have to ask...what exactly are they afriad of then?

The reason why the area has been earmarked for a major supermarket is because it is severly UNDERSERVED. The small number of bodegas and mini-markets that carry the same products at the same prices are NOT providing competition or choices, nor a diversity of products, nor the necessary services that the community demands and should have.

Look to the Gateway Center in the Concourse section of the Lower Bronx to see what happens when a major supermarket comes to the area. Did the smaller supermarkets close? Nope. Did the smaller businesses close? Nope. Instead, the community can now do its shopping LOCALLY, and has the diversity of products, fresh produce, and services that were missing. In fact, there are MORE people coming to the area to do their shopping, which benefits the smaller retailers. Those people from surrounding Bronx neighborhoods are coming in because they too are just as underserved.

Unfortunately, Morton Williams could care less about the community..they have been here for 50 years and have done NOTHING for it. Sure they have their "hiring" office across the street..but what are they ONLY hiring for? Low wage, dead-end, cashier jobs. What do they really mean when they claim "we have been in the community for 50 years." It means they have maintained their monopoly and fattened their profits by having their stores in the community, but THEY DONT LIVE HERE. How many of their Executives/Directors/VPs etc live in the community. The answer is ZERO. How many Executives/Directors/VPs have been hired out of that Bronx hiring office? The answer is ZERO. That is not a business that has "been in the community for 50 years", that is a business that has EXPLOITED the community for 50 years. How exactly does that help the community? We are good enough to be a cashier for $8 per hour, and thats about it.

Please do not believe the lies and smear campaign by Morton Williams. They could care less about the community, and simply will use any excuse to maintain their stranglehold on the community. The Community Board District Manager KNOWS the community, LIVES in the community, is FROM the community, and is WORKING to make the community better...and what is his recommendation? WE NEED MORE SUPERMARKETS because the commmunity is grossly underserved, there is no diversity of products or enough fresh produce, and too many residents are forced to do their shopping elsewhere.

We need more competition, not less. We need more choices, not fewer. Allowing Morton Williams to hijack the community and this entire process is absolutely unacceptable. This Kingsbridge Armory redevelopment is about improving the COMMUNITY not about protecting Morton Williams' profits. Let's bring this discussion back to the community's needs, because that's what its all about.

Anonymous said...

I agree with CB#7's District Manager. We need a major supermarket in the area. I shop weekly at the Super Stop&Shop at the Cross County Shopping Center. The options are greater than in local Bronx markets,and the prices are more affordable. I purchased a 1/2 gallon of Tropicana Orange Juice this week in a local market. The cost was $4.19. I paid $3.00 two days later for the same juice at the Super Stop&Shop in Cross County. Bronxites without a car do not have the option to shop else where. We need a major supermarket at the armory.

anthony rivieccio said...

While one would not agree that Morton Williams needs a lot of improvement, one must remember that MW has provided Bronx Jobs for 50 years-unlike Stella Doro, who is now closing down

So, do we want another supermarket at the risk of decreasing Bronx Jobs. In the CB7 proposal, they have appoved a supermarket-but NO tools in making sure Bronxites Have these jobs

And the reference about Mr Tirado. While a good man and choice for District Manager-he just moved in from Queens-less than 2 years ago-so he's learning the neighborhood himself!!!

Guywithacause said...

The answer to your comment Mr. Riviecchio is YES, we do want another supermarket. The assertion that "we may lose jobs" is a scare tactic and simply WRONG. This new supermarket is substantially larger than Morton Williams, and will provide a significant number of new jobs and better working environment than Morton Williams. Unless of course these $10 an hour jobs (or whatever miniscule amount they pay) will be given to people in Queen? Manhattan? New Jersey?

It's unrealistic to think that these lower-wage jobs will go to anyone besides local Bronx residents. Furthermore, the idea that the entire community should be held hostage, and cannot increase amenities, grow, and provide diversified products because of fear that we may lose jobs is preposterous and will only lead to more of the same INACTION that has plagued the community, and this Armory reviltalization in particular, for decades.

Do not be swayed by the fear tacticts and smoke and mirrors games Morton Williams and their cohorts are playing. Maintain your focus on this simple question: Are we better off as a community with more choices, more competition, or less? Furthermore, do you believe Morton Williams wants competition, or would they prefer maintaining their current monopoly so they can dictate prices and determine product selection based on profit margin?

The answer is clear to why exactly are we allowing Morton Williams to hijack this whole development?