Wilde Lake residents don't receive the Columbia village benefits they deserve [Letters]

March 26, 2013

Yesterday, I received a letter from the Columbia Bank announcing that the branch in the Wilde Lake Village Center is closing. I have banked at Columbia Bank for many years ever since it opened its branch in my local village center.

So, now, we residents of Wilde Lake have no grocery and no bank in our village center. In short, we do not enjoy the amenities that were envisioned for all residents of Columbia. I might as well be living in some other town, given the need to drive to everything I use on a daily basis. I put this squarely on the shoulders of two entities, Kimco (which owns the village center) and the Village Board.

Both Kimco and the Village Board will likely respond that Columbia Bank's decision was their own business decision, over which Kimco and the Board had no control. However, Kimco has allowed Wilde Lake Village center to languish for about six years, killing the business at the village center.

Further, Kimco is not planning to put a grocery in the village center, but instead, rather condescendingly, says that Wilde Lake residents should be happy with a grocery aisle in a Rite Aid. The Village Board, which is captured by Kimco friendly board members, have put Kimco's interests above the interests of Wilde Lake residents and have simply not advocated for something better.

There is a fundamental level of unfairness imposed on Wilde Lake residents. Perhaps, Wilde Lake residents should receive a discount on our CA fees, as we simply do not enjoy the same benefits that residents of other villages enjoy. These are very sad times for residents of Wilde Lake, and the redevelopment of the village center does not promise that this inequity will be resolved.

Andrew Solberg


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