Wales Township to carry particular assembly for Greenback Normal web site plan

Wales Township will hold a special session Monday night to review a location map for a Dollar General Store and some residents are not happy with the potential new business.

The special meeting of the planning committee will be held at 7:00 p.m. in the Congregational Hall at 1372 Goodells Road, and both community leader Elizabeth Masters and resident Matt Kettlewell expect many people to attend.

“I know there is a lot of support for the store, as well as opposition,” said Masters, with the opposition being the “louder party.”

The proposed Dollar General is 9,100 square feet and will be located on the southeast corner of the intersection of Wales Center and Lapeer Streets, according to the site plan submitted to the community in April.

Part of a site map for a proposed Dollar General Store in Wales Township.

“It’s the busiest intersection in Wales Township,” said Masters.

Dollar General spokeswoman Angela Petkovic said in an email that the company is currently in “due diligence” on a new store on Wales Center Road.

“That means we’re interested in opening a new store in St. Clair County, but we haven’t committed yet,” she said. “Based on our current schedule, we assume that a final decision about the store will be made by late summer.”

When the Wales Township Dollar General is built it will be the 18th location in St. Clair County.

The Dollar General at 6986 Lakeshore Road in Burtchville Township.

When the shop is built, it will employ six to ten people. Dollar Generals sell goods like groceries, health and beauty products, household cleaners and more, Petkovic said.

She said that when selecting stores, the company considered whether it could meet customers’ price, value and choice needs.

“We continue to strive to provide convenience to customers who may not have affordable retail options nearby,” she said.

Kettlewell, who lives three miles from the potential new business, said another Dollar General was unnecessary because one is nearby in Emmett.

“They are like literally everywhere,” he said.

Where a proposed dollar general store would be near the intersection of Wales Center and Lapeer streets in Wales Township, according to a site map submitted in April.

He said Dollar Generals could make it difficult for other convenience stores to establish themselves in the community because local stores were unable to compete with national chain prices.

The Dollar General would increase the community’s tax revenue, but Kettlewell said he did not see the community hiring as much as 10 people as a great benefit.

He said he plans to go to the meeting on Monday to hear other people’s opinions, “although it won’t change anything”.

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Masters said Monday’s meeting is to review the site map to make sure the map includes adequate parking, complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and has gentle lighting.

“The steps are more advanced than people think,” she said.

Since the community is zoned for general business, Dollar General has the right to build on the site. The community cannot discriminate against a company if it meets the zoning and construction criteria, she said.

Masters said local residents’ biggest concern is they won’t want to buy China-made goods, although Dollar General also sells US-made products.

A sign outside Wales Township Hall for a special planning committee meeting on June 24, 2021.

She said people are also concerned that the Dollar General is putting other businesses out of business. Masters said she believes Dollar General will be enough different from other stores and that there is room in the community for both for different audiences.

Contact Bryce Airgood at (810) 989-6202 or [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter @ bairgood123.

The southeast corner of the intersection of Wales Center and Lapeer streets in Wales Township could be upgraded to a Dollar General.  A spokesman said the company expected a decision in late summer.

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