Let's Stay Cool, Like the Fonzie – or Rather: Discussing 'Costco'

Learning about Costco and Trolls.

At the end of the day, we're a relatively small town. I think we need to remember that when commenting on the site where a big-box wholesaler is being proposed, we have to maintain a certain level of respect.

We're all going to meet one another when more fully developed plans with concrete proposals about the traffic and the sewer and such have matured – assuming we all care enough to show up at the public hearings around September (as they are tentatively scheduled).

I don't want to get punched in the mouth because I said some crazy thing in comments section of a Patch article. I have to admit, some of my comments could be deemed inflammatory. I apologize for any offensive commentary. Going forward, I promise to keep it constructive. We can disagree, but let's not hope for one another to "fall off the face of the earth."

Whether Costco comes to town or not, I'm still going to want to look you in the eye and say hello. The veil of anonymity that the Internet can provide sometimes gets the best of us, but let's not let it. [Note: if you go to the Facebook page for Patch and check out the article I wrote, not a single person was in favor of Costco in the Facebook comments. Zero people that had to attach their reputation to their comment was in favor of the proposal.] 

With all that said, I think we should take some queues from our town supervisor Grace. He rightly – in my mind – opened the "courtesy of the floor" section of town board meetings so that you were not confined to 3 minutes. He fully supports you speaking your mind, but asks you to remain respectful and to try and not repeat points made previously. If anyone told another person to "fall off the face of the earth," he wouldn't allow such behavior.

It's a lot to ask in an Internet environment, but going forward, if you are going to comment on the Costco/big-box issue, you should do so with your real name, or at least keep it civil and concise. We should try and emulate the town board meeting environment to remain accountable for our words, spoken or written. It's easy to hide behind pseudonyms like Hayden Macnair [Harry Potter villain] and it's easy to shout people down or resort to schoolyard antics. After all, we'll probably all meet in person at the planning board meeting in September.

I've used the term "troll" recently and want to make sure the community understands what I mean by it; it's  a person that makes inflammatory and off-topic comments in an online community, basically. I'm not insulting anyone's looks or suggesting you live under a bridge if I call you troll.

Lastly, the big-box wholesaler site, be it Sam's Club or Costco or Super BJ's, is an area of great import to the future of Yorktown; I believe the Yorktown Comprehensive lays out a vision in-congruent with a big-box wholesaler. That's the center of the debate; it's not about Costco, per se.

The plans for the site are very rudimentary at this point. Case in point: the site plan doesn't even differentiate the asphalt from the planted and woodland areas (see before and after photos at the top of this post). They've laid out some broad strokes but many details have yet to come into focus, like where they will find the sewer capacity – Yorktown does not have it. That's one of the few facts we are certain of at this point.

In the meantime, I promise to make a formal request for the planning records under the Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) and will share what information I can glean. I encourage you to do the same and compare notes. 

It's more important to me that we're congenial neighbors than what ends up on the subject parcel. I can live with poor planning, but I can't live with crazy neighbors. 

God bless us all. 

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

george simmons September 24, 2012 at 05:08 AM
I couldn't sleep because, I wanted to correct an assumption. That some might take offense to. I was not saying that only low life low class people shop at Costco. All kinds of people shop and Costco,BJs SAMs etc. I was trying to point out if you increase the population and traffic flow some bad elements will most certainly be attracted to it. And we all know we don't want that do we? NOT EVEN if someone tried to buy me a 5 course dinner at a fine restaurant would I or should I agree to that. So my fellow residents I am not trying to insult my brother and sister tax paying neighbors. I am merely trying to make a point. Thank you and remember the best way to stimulate a local economy is to keep the money local. Remember the motto of the Yorktown Chamber of Commerce "Shop Local"
Bill September 24, 2012 at 05:19 AM
So you're now saying we should not add ANY retail because it will just attract bad people, right? Let's leave all the unrented stores empty. Let's encourage more to go out of business so we have less chance of undesirables coming to Yorktown. BTW I spent $84 at Costco in Nanuet today. I would love to spend it at Costco in Yorktown instead. But I'm certainly not going to spend that $84 at the stores that are in Yorktown today.
Bill September 30, 2012 at 12:23 AM
George.. because you got me interested (and because I was in the area), I decided to take advantage of the $3.83 regular gas at the Costco in New Rochelle today. I've uploaded a photo so you can see where it says "Members Only" (which I confirmed with the employee there). Unless they don't know NYS law, I'd say you're wrong in your claim that it is state law that anyone can buy gas there. BTW I am not going to claim that this is going to be their normal price, I'm sure it is a special for their grand opening. But Nanuet was $4.02 today, which is still better than anything else in Yorktown. Oh, and I think they had 18 pumps and I did not see anyone sticking out on the road waiting for gas, nor the parking lot it was attached to.
Bill September 30, 2012 at 12:28 AM
BTW, George, my problem is not when "Someone gives you facts supporting their opinion". My problem is when someone gives me made up stuff masquerading as facts (technically known as lies, or maybe just BS) to support their opinion, and then trys to convince people that their opinion is valid as a result of the lies (or BS) that they are spreading. For example, your premise that people will come to town to get cheap gas because they do not have to be a member and then commit crimes is just completely bogus since you DO need to be a member. I hope I have not insulted you, George.
Jane mccarthy October 01, 2012 at 02:37 PM
Bill- do you live anywhere near Mohansic avenue? Do you witness the traffic daily?


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