Lower Allen Township approves Wal-Mart plansJim T. Ryan
The Lower Allen Township commissioners Tuesday night approved preliminary plans for a Wal-Mart on a former car dealership lot near the Capital City Mall despite the absence of new flood plain maps, which had held up a decision for months.
Arkansas-based Wal-Mart Stores Inc. still needs final approvals from the township before the giant retailer can start building, said township manager Thomas Vernau. However, with the Federal Emergency Management Agency nearly complete on its review of proposed changes to Cedar Run flood plain maps, there was no need to hold up the preliminary plans any longer, he said.
Wal-Mart proposed an 88,442-square-foot store at the site on Hartzdale Drive. But the plan has been delayed for months while the township waited to see if FEMA would finish reviewing the flood plain maps.
The company is seeking changes to the maps — which they say are outdated — because the store plan calls for a raised road around the building. The road's support structure would be in the flood plain without the flood map updates, according to plans. Codes don't allow construction in the flood plain.
Wal-Mart is being investigated for an alleged bribery scheme related to its aggressive expansion in Mexico. The company is set to elect a new board of directors Friday at its annual stockholders meeting.
Location of proposed Walmart