MUST READ!!! FORMER KANSAS CITY COUNCIL WOMAN SHARON SANDERS BROOKS REVEALS BEHIND THE SCENES DEETS ON EAST SIDE ALDI ECO-DEVO!!!
Here's more detail on a story that's only meeting with mainstream media adulation . . . But even better . . .
FORMER COUNCIL LADY SHARON SANDERS BROOKS NOTES THE BEHIND THE SCENES NEGOTIATIONS LEADING UP TO ALDI'S CONSTRUCTION!!!
Take note of really great work in minority recruiting and curbing liquor sales.
Just posted to social media and now shared here . . .
SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT ON THE NEW ALDI'S IN THE 3RD DISTRICT
As many in the community celebrate the opening of an Aldi's today at 39th & Prospect Avenue, I want to remind people this effort began under the the councilmatic term of Troy Nash and Sandra McFadden Weaver. There are many people who have worked on this effort over the years including the residents of the community who gave their input; Ricardo Lucus, an economic development specialist who worked on acquiring the properties so the site could be built. Melba Curls and I worked with KCMO City employee Andrew Bracker, the Brownsfields coordinator for the City to obtain the federal dollars to do the necessary Brownfield cleanup of the site because it was toxic due to what had previously been stored on the site. PIAC representatives, who are volunteers, over the years have also played a role.
I also let Aldi's know that the community had explicitly stated they did NOT want alcohol sold at that store. I don't mean wine which is sold at a lot of Aldi's, they wanted to bring in LIQUOR sales to the 39th Street store. As you know that site had been a trouble spot for a number of years, where people hung out and drank and sold drugs . Aldi's initially promised NOT to sell liquor at the Paseo Blvd. during negotiations with the City, but after they opened they have tried on at least 3 times to secure a liquor license, despite the objections of the nearby community and the company's promise NOT to do so. There is recovery program being run right across the street from the Paseo Blvd. store the last thing people trying to turn their lives around need would be liquor sales right across the street.
I discussed MBE/WBE goals for the contractors which Aldi's balked at initially. Federally dollars where being spent on the project and maybe City tax payer dollars if PIAC funds where used for sidewalks and other infrastructure improvements to the site. We also discussed the design of the building requesting that it be of the same quality as their other stores and even discussed utilizing GREEN design elements as Aldi's has done in some of their other store locations.The company is based outside of the U.S.
I additionally I had stated we wanted employees to be drawn from the surrounding neighborhood and I wanted an African American store manager for that location. Aldi's has NOT traditionally held recruitment events in the urban core.Though they did this time, however I don't know if the positions included management level positions. I don't know if the current 3rd District council people followed through on the initial negotiations or not . However, I wanted to set the record straight.
Development in the urban core does NOT happen over night. It didn't become disinvested over night, it took over 40 years. By the way, during the economic downturn, which actually started in the later part of 2007, and continued to worsen in the U.S. in 2008, Aldi's at one point in time did NOT to build any Aldi's in the U.S. Don't be fooled by the styling and profiling in the media by some. I have chosen NOT to attend the grand opening today, but I know the truth. As as the saying goes plant a tree that others will sit under.