The Little Rock City Board is set to vote Tuesday on a new Murphy Oil 24-hour convenience store at 12th and University. Leslie Peacock has written here previously about neighborhood unhappiness.
I recommend a reading of the write-up the board will receive on this proposal, directly across 12th Street from an existing convenience store. (A proposal to also build a hotel to the north on the furniture store property is separate from the convenience store proposal and not on the agenda Tuesday.)
The Planning Commission meeting notes are instructive. They are packed with objections from neighbors. It includes the City Planning staff’s recommendation against the project. The League of Women Voters opposed it. Except for Murphy Oil, the project had but one advocate — Gene Pfeifer, who owns commercial property east across University. He said putting a business on the vacant property would be good for him.
The writeup also says:
Commissioner Bubbus stated he wanted to clarify a comment that was made by one of the opponents. He stated the Commission did care about residents and ￼felt their role was critical in the decision making process. Commissioner Bubbus stated the Commission and residents did not always agree but the Commission did care about citizens and their concerns.
The vote was 9-1. Eerily reminiscent of the universally opposed C-store at Broadway and Third that the commission also overwhelmingly approved.
Mayor Stodola picks the planning commissioners. They care. Really. Just don’t judge them by their votes.