Some of you have probably seen this story on the Wednesday Journal's web site: http://www.oakpark.com/News/Articles/10-13-2011/Gun_store,_just_rif...
In short, the Village is considering a business license application for a rifle and shotgun shop on Roosevelt and Ridgeland (just around the corner from Pete's).
Aside from the whole Second Amendment debate, which is currently raging on the WJ site, I just don't want a gun shop in my neighborhood. The whole plan for the remodeling of Roosevelt was supposed to include businesses that will drive retail traffic--restaurants, boutiques, and similar types of businesses (that seem to be popping up every other week on the Berwyn side of the street). A gun shop does not fit in with this vision.
I feel like this business will create a certain impression of our neighborhood, especially among people who are already concerned about the proximity of OP and Berwyn to the west side of Chicago. Basically, the presence of a gun shop will imply that there is a demand for guns in our neighborhood--not great for property values, I'm sure.
So I'm wondering if OP residents have any say in the businesses that move into our neighborhoods. Does anyone know if there are forums for license applications? Can we submit petitions? Write letters? Any other ideas?
I wrote to the Village trustees, zoning board, etc., asking for them to find some legal reason to prevent this shop from opening and got this response from Ray Johnson:
Unfortunately, our current zoning and codes do allow this use at this location. The current code is being reviewed and I'm hoping we can make some changes which will pass muster with the recent Supreme Court decisions. We can't outlaw the use -- but can limit their locations.
In case you didn't get the flier, the good people at SEOPCO have organized a community meeting/discussion with the gun shop owner on Nov. 29 at 7pm at Irving. More information at www.seopco.org.
Everyone who is worried about this store affecting the property value of their homes needs to relax. There will be no large signage and he's selling hunting rifles. There are gun stores peppered all throughout the suburbs and it doesn't effect their property values at all.
Let this man open his store and sell handguns to our police officers and hunting rifles to outdoorsmen.
He *says* there's going to be no large signage, but there are no ordinances preventing it, so who says that his plans won't change?