MPC rezones land for Walmart in North Bossier

The Bossier City council annexed in the land on Wemple Rd. just outside the city limits for...
The Bossier City council annexed in the land on Wemple Rd. just outside the city limits for Walmart on June 7, in spite of protests from neighbors. (Source: Victoria Shirley/KSLA News 12)
Published: Jun. 13, 2016 at 8:09 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 5, 2016 at 9:33 PM CDT
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BOSSIER CITY, LA (KSLA) - The Metropolitan Planning Commission (MPC) voted Monday to rezone the land on Wemple Rd. at Airline Dr. in North Bossier to commercial.

This new development paves the way for Walmart to build a new store on the 99 acres of land.

The Bossier City Council annexed the land last week.

The MPC director told the city council that Walmart had withdrawn its 24-hour operation application meaning when the superstore opens, it can only be open from 6 a.m. until midnight.

After the MPC's decision, Walmart issued the following statement:

"We are pleased that the Metropolitan Planning Commission continues to support our commitment to serve Bossier City families," said Anne Hatfield, Walmart's director of communications. "North Bossier is one of the fastest growing communities in Louisiana. With the expanding population, there is an increasing need for convenient access to fresh, affordable groceries and household items, and we look forward to serving those customers soon."

Many residents voiced their disappointment with Monday's decision during the MPC meeting.

"I've got to believe it is over once it goes through the city, I've got to believe the fight is over, I have to believe no one is listening," said Renee Sawyer. "It's my livelihood, it is my life, it is where I was going to retire, but now I am going to have to leave because I'm not going to stay."

Several residents have reached out to KSLA News 12 about the future of the current Walmart Supercenter, concerned that it will close. But Walmart officials say their plans for that store haven't changed.

"Any talk of a store closure or conversion to a distribution center is simply not true. We have repeatedly said that we have no plans to close the store on Airline Drive. What we want to do is add a store to Bossier City so we can complement and support the growth in the area," explained Hatfield.

The Bossier City Council will still need to give the final approval before the store can be built. The final decision by the council is protocol for any zoning change.

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