Letter – Just how will more warehouses benefit Suffolk?

Published 6:01 pm Tuesday, September 20, 2022

To the Editor:

Suffolk has not yet adapted to the warehouse growth that it is undergoing so it’s premature for City Council to approve a rezoning request to clear the way for what would become the third largest warehouse complex in the nation, slightly smaller than the Tesla Factory in Fremont, California.

Warehouses are still going up along U.S. 58, and the North Suffolk Amazon project, the sixth largest warehouse complex under construction in the U.S., was just completed, but most council members don’t seem to question the value of this monstrosity in the middle of a “suburban use” district.

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U.S. Routes 58 and 460 would have to be changed, and citizens are concerned that the tax burden will fall on them. Mayor Duman seems to agree with the disaster creation strategy advocated by the Port of Virginia representative who declared “economic growth can reveal transportation challenges. The Port of Virginia is committed to work to leverage state and federal partnerships to identify transportation solutions.” Build it, create a transportation nightmare for those of us who live here or want to visit, then we’ll work on a solution to fix it.

Citizens are smarter than that. We know what needs to be fixed and it will cost $100 million or more.

How will Suffolk and its residents benefit? The property owner, developer, port, and even the Commonwealth all get money from this deal, while taxpayers get an eyesore, air and water pollution, safety issues, trucks competing with our cars for our local roadways, and mostly backbreaking low-wage jobs that don’t provide economic dignity for anyone. Virginia and its port should be investing in its future, not raiding our tax coffers if they want to make it work.

City Council members who ignore the will of its residents to impose the Port 460 monstrosity on us can expect a continued fight.

Denise M. Murden

Suffolk