SPRINGFIELD, Mo -- A group of residents are standing up against Walmart.
Members from Standing Up Against Walmart voiced their opposition today about plans for a Walmart Neighborhood Market to be built in West-Central Springfield.
Last month, the city denied Walmart's request to build a fifth location at Grand Street and Campbell Avenue after concerns a residential area would be used as an entrance to the store's parking lot.
Many homes in the West-Central neighborhood may have had fliers on their doors today.
Several members Standing Up Against Wal-Mart protested today against the development of a Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market that would replace Calvary Temple Church.
Protestors say Wal-Mart will have an unfair advantage over local businesses, but Wal-Mart representatives say these stores help spark economic development.
The neighborhood association isn't buying it. Some local residents are standing up to Walmart today.
Knocking on doors and using costumes to show opposition to a Walmart store in their neighborhood.
"Somebody has got to try to stand up at some point in time for the interest of working families and area businesses in the future," said David Klotz, member of Standing Up Against Walmart.
Members of Stand Up Against Walmart say this store could destroy the improvements and progress the West-Central area of Springfield has made.
"Anybody who's seen Springfield over the past couple of decades knows downtown has come a long way. We don't want to see that undermined or eroded," said Klotz.
Klotz says the more than 120 member group believes the proposed development will have a negative impact on local businesses well known to the neighborhoods they belong to.
"Most retailers, especially in small communities, have been put out of business. If Wal-Mart has any competition, it's very little," said Klotz.
But Walmart representatives disagree and say a new Walmart store could bring in more money for local businesses and provide more grocery options to the neighborhood.
"Walmart Neighborhood Markets help stimulate economic development and jobs in surrounding areas. The small businesses that surround our stores generally have products and services we don't offer or are strong in areas where we don't compete," said Daniel Morales, Director of Communications and Community Relations for Walmart Stores, Inc
But Klotz says business loss is only one issue.
"We believe there are safety concerns. Traffic concerns," said Klotz.
Last month the city handed the issue over to the planning and zoning commission to consider some design changes because of concerns about a residential area being used as an entrance into the store.
Klotz says safety issues aside, to prevent Walmart from coming into the neighborhood; residents have to help make that choice.
"I hate to lay it on the consumers, but the consumer needs to be wiser and make a better choice," said Klotz.
The issue will be on the January 24th Planning and Zoning Commission's Agenda.