BOSSIER CITY, LA (KSLA) - Bossier City voted this week to annex 99 acres of land to build a new Walmart Supercenter, but that isn't sitting well with several hundred residents living near the area. So, they started a petition to fight it.
As opposed to its cross street the much busier Airline Drive, Wemple Road generally wouldn't be thought of as a major road. But that could soon change.
The Bossier City Council voted this week to annex 99 acres of land off of Wemple Road, directly behind the Exxon Station. They set aside $3.6 million to make improvements to streets, roads and drainage to accommodate a new Walmart Supercenter.
But several hundred residents, like Jay Harrison, have come together in hopes of stopping it out of concern for their neighborhoods.
"In our eyes, there tends to be some unsavory characters, and crime happens in Walmart parking lots. It's just the nature of the beast," he said.
Harrison believes it could negatively affect the neighborhood he picked to live long term.
"If the crime rate goes up, property values go down. So that's something that I'd like to know a little more about," explained Harrison.
His biggest concern is the safety for neighborhood children. The streets in his neighborhood don't have any sidewalks for the kids to play on. Harrison said putting a Walmart nearby will subject his neighborhood to a lot of cut-through traffic, and that could be a dangerous situation for a child.
"I've got a little boy. We moved into that neighborhood because it was picturesque. You see somebody walking their dog, a dad playing catch in the front yard. You know that's why we moved to this neighborhood, and I feel like Walmart is going to destroy that," said Harrison.
The petition can be found here. The next meeting on the topic is on September 14.