YORKTOWN, N.Y. -- Yorktown Daily Voice accepts signed letters to the editor. Send signed letters to Yorktown@dailyvoice.com .
To the editor:
Costco came to town in 2008 and expressed an interest in Yorktown, the initial response by many was anything would be better than the buildings in disrepair and abandoned on the 4 parcels that would make up the 19-acre development.
In addition, it would help stimulate the economy, bring in new taxes and improve infrastructure in the Crompond Business District, including roads, storm-water and sewers.
The pro-Costco group looking for better shopping opportunities, improving the tax base and infrastructure.
The anti-Costco group was concerned about the environmental impacts, traffic and the impacts such an operation would have on our local small business community.
The DEIS submitted by Costco identified 92 “relevant retailers” (largely local small businesses) who would suffer significant, negative economic impact.
Prior to the formation of the Yorktown Small Business Association, this writer was involved with many aspects of the proposed development.
Upon establishing the YSBA in 2014 (yes, Costco gave me the motivation to form the YSBA) and meeting with many local small businesses in our 5 business hamlets, one thing was clear: fear of the negative impact of big box, national and regional chains was motivating them to actively pursue survival strategies.
When the 14 gas operators in town realized the volume of gas that the combination of Costco and BJs would be selling and the impact it would have on their businesses (3 to 5 would fail, in 12 to 18 months) it became a matter of survival.
In speaking with our numerous local small business owners, many who were on Costco’s list of “relevant retailers” such as jewelers (8), bakers (7), food marts (18), pharmacies (3), and florist/nurseries (9) owners to name a few, it became very clear that the impact of Costco on their businesses would be devastating. Not so, with Lowes!
Lowes will benefit the residents of Yorktown and complement our local small businesses more than Costco would have.
Bob Giordano, founder/president, Yorktown Small Business Association