Petition fights to keep the Grand Canyon from becoming a shopping mall

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Petition Aims To Stop Grand Canyon Supermall

Some people consider the Grand Canyon to be one of the natural wonders of the world, other people consider it the perfect location ... for a shopping mall.
Developers Confluence Partners want to build a 420-acre attraction out of the Grand Canyon's east rim called the Grand Canyon Escalade. The $100M plan includes shops, an Imax theater, hotels, an RV park and a tram that would take riders to the valley floor in ten minutes.

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Petition fights to keep the Grand Canyon from becoming a shopping mall
This photo provided by the National Park Service shows dense clouds at the south rim of the Grand Canyon on Thursday, Dec. 11, 2014 in Arizona. A rare weather phenomenon on Thursday had visitors looking out to a sea of thick clouds. The total cloud inversion is expected to hang over the Grand Canyon just below the rim throughout the day. (AP Photo/National Park Service, Maci MacPherson) -----
This photo provided by the National Park Service shows dense clouds at the south rim of the Grand Canyon on Thursday, Dec. 11, 2014 in Arizona. A rare weather phenomenon on Thursday had visitors looking out to a sea of thick clouds. The total cloud inversion is expected to hang over the Grand Canyon just below the rim throughout the day. (AP Photo/National Park Service, Maci MacPherson) -----
Confluence of Colorado Little Colorado Grand Canyon National Park Arizona
Aerial shots around Page/Arizona
Aerial shots around Page/Arizona
In this photo provided by the National Park Service, visitors to Mather Point on the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park, in Ariz., view a rare weather phenomenon - a sea of thick clouds filling the canyon just below the rim, Thursday, Dec. 11, 2014. The total cloud inversion is expected to hang inside the canyon throughout Thursday. Cory Mottice of the National Weather Service said the weather event happens about once every several years, though the landmark was treated to one last year. (AP Photo/National Park Service, Michael Quinn)
Grand Canyon DEIS Aerial: Confluence of Colorado & Little Colorado Rivers
Outflow of Havasu Creek into the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon, Arizona
Little Colorado River (at the confluence of the Colorado River), Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona USA
Little Colorado River (at the confluence of the Colorado River), Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona USA
Little Colorado River (left) confluence with the Colorado River (right) in the Grand Canyon national park
Havasu Creek confluence at Colorado River - Grand Canyon
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Not everyone's on board with the proposed plan, though. In fact, lots of people are downright horrified. An online petition created by Sum Of Us is fighting to stop the super mall, and as of April 9th, it is about 18K signatures away from reaching their goal of 100K.

"The site for the proposed development is called 'The Confluence' and is a sacred place for the Navajo," the petition reads. "This is the place where their people first emerged; as told in their creation story."

However, some members of the Navajo tribe argue the development would create jobs. Navajo Nation President Ben Shelly told NBC News back in February he plans to give the project his approval.

"I want my people to have a better life," Shelly told NBC. "They need jobs, they need homes -- they need good homes."

Confluence Partners hopes the project can start construction as early as 2017, but if more speak up, perhaps it won't happen at all.

What's your take on the contentious plan? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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