Big Box? No, Big Excitement!

It's a good time for large chain retailers in Chicago. First came Mayor Daley's veto two weeks ago of a city ordinance that would have ...
by | September 27, 2006

Walmart It's a good time for large chain retailers in Chicago. First came Mayor Daley's veto two weeks ago of a city ordinance that would have forced big-box retailers to pay a higher minimum wage.

Today, the city got its first Wal-Mart. And it was met with a mob-like frenzy:

Lines snaked around the mega-retailer's West Side building long before it opened, packed with residents excited to welcome the store, its bargains and its jobs to the area. [...]

Nearly 16,000 people applied for the 450 jobs at the new store, where an estimated 98 percent of workers live in the neighborhood.

The residents who support the store think a minimum-wage job is better than no job, and they fear that the ordinance would have kept large retailers from locating in Chicago at all.

Given the overwhelming reception of the new store, it seems likely they'll have a lot of other big-box options in the not-too-distant future.

Photo via Flickr, from mjevans

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