Our Statement on the Corner Store Ordinance

From the office of Ian Schlakman - Green Party Candidate for City Council District 12 - July 20th 2016

For Immediate Release: 

            Corner stores are very important to communities.  They provide a place where neighborhood residents are conveniently able to pick up food and get services on the way to or from work or school.  But these spaces also provide an anchor for communities.  Residents meet each other throughout the course of the day, exchange information about going-ons in the community, and build community ties and solidarity with each other.  In short, they not only provide economic benefits to a community, and needed resources, but they also empower neighborhoods to build and feel an enhanced sense of community.

            Vacancies of corner stores are a community issue throughout the 12th District, especially in the Remington neighborhood.  To counteract the issues brought up by these vacancies, the Greater Remington Improvement Association (GRIA) has been working to achieve the passage of the Cornerstore Ordinance.  GRIA members and other Remington residents tirelessly organized for the ordinance, collecting signatures and educating the community about the project, which would rezone 12 vacant corner properties for new commercial use.

            To the dismay of Remington residents, and Ian Schlakman, the ordinance for rezoning has been reversed due to a challenge in the city’s Circuit Court for reversal.  This reversal means that the small businesses that benefit from this ordinance will be not be able to open and begin serving the residents of the Greater Remington area.  Consequently, the continued absence of the corner stores will continue even though there are local entrepreneurs from the community ready and waiting to serve the community needs.

            Ian Schlakman actually testified in favor of the ordinance when a hearing was held at City Hall. As a small business owner and someone that counseled small businesses in the Remington area he saw the grave need for affordable retail space. Often times it was Remington residents themselves seeking to open a business or community space in their own neighborhood. In order to encourage entrepreneurship of locals who don't have the massive capital needed to rehab larger industrial spaces in the area Schlakman saw this a key piece of legislation.

            Ian Schlakman, Green Party candidate for City Council District 12, feels strongly about the ordinance. GRIA President Ryan Flanigan’s words in the official release from the association regarding the reversal of the ordinance reflects his feelings: “We remain optimistic that our corner stores will again become an active and vital part of our community as in days past.”  As the City Councilman for the 12th District, Ian Schlakman would work to reintroduce this ordinance which has massive support from the Greater Remington community.  Ian Schlakman will introduce a bill supporting this ordinance, with a possible expansion of rezoning efforts in line with the needs and desires of the Greater Remington community and into other parts of the 12th District.  Bringing new corner stores to our blocks is a high priority.  Residents need them, and are voicing their concerns for them, and as the 12th District City Councilor, Ian Schlakman will do all he has in his authority to assure that the ordinance is renewed, and progress can be made to bring flourishing businesses to the Greater Remington area, which will benefit our community economically and socially!

From the office of Ian Schlakman - Green Party Candidate for City Council District 12 - July 20th 2016 - web: ian12.com - phone: 410-996-4848 - twitter: @ischlakman - FB: fb.com/IanSchlakman