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ARCHIVED  October 1, 1996

Higher speed limit diverts Laramie traffic from 287

CHEYENNE – Higher speed limits on interstate highways in Colorado and Wyoming may be helping divert truckers from driving through Old Town Fort Collins to take the U.S. Highway 287 cutoff north to Laramie, according to Ron Phillips, transportation services director for the City of Fort Collins.But four or five years of construction on Interstate 80 between Cheyenne and Laramie and on Interstate 25 between Wellington and the Wyoming-Colorado state line won’t help, Phillips said.
Phillips was in Cheyenne recently to meet with the Greater Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce Transportation Committee to discuss long-term transportation planning, including the so-called “triangle project” to divert truck traffic from Colorado 14 and U.S. 287 onto I-25 and I-80, because of the congestion it causes in Fort Collins as it skirts the historic Old Town District.
The U.S. 287 cutoff is 17 miles shorter (69 miles vs. 86), but 75 mph speed limits on the interstates in both states provide an incentive to truckers to follow the longer I-25/I-80 route, Phillips said.
However, the speed advantage is offset by the on-going three-year Telephone Canyon construction project east of Laramie, where blasting and single-lane traffic is causing delays of an hour or more, and by I-25 reconstruction in Colorado starting next year and continuing for four years.
Ultimately, the solution may be a marketing plan, plus automated ports-of-entry in Fort Collins and Cheyenne, Phillips said. “If we could some way combine and automate the ports on I-25 and keep the port unautomated at Laramie, there would be an incentive to use I-25,” he said.Dillard’s store takes shape
CHEYENNE – Frontier Mall’s newest addition is taking shape, as Dillard’s Department Store rises in the middle of the mall between Joslin’s and Penney’s.
Dillard’s is scheduled to open in March 1997, and construction is on schedule, according to Jodee McClure, the mall’s marketing director. The store has two distinctive entrance arches and was framed in by mid-September.
Meanwhile, the second of three Limited Group stores has opened in the mall, and the third is nearing completion. Victoria’s Secret opened Sept. 5, and Compagnie Express is scheduled to open Oct. 17.
Victoria’s Secret is one of the premier lingerie companies in the world, with more than 670 stores and international sales estimated by The Wall Street Journal at almost $2 billion last year. The new Cheyenne store is one of 100 opening this year.
“The excitement over Victoria’s Secret opening in Cheyenne has been overwhelming and extremely positive,” McClure said.
And the excitement is slated to continue, with the mall at full occupancy for the upcoming holiday season. McClure said several vacant locations are under contract for seasonal holiday stores, including San Francisco Music Box, Hickory Farms and See’s Candies.
The Frontier Mall is operated and managed by CBL & Associates Properties Inc. of Chattanooga, Tenn.Pizza chain to open in mall
CHEYENNE – A national pizza chain is locating in Cheyenne’s Frontier Mall, replacing a family-owned pizza restaurant that had been one of the mall’s earliest tenants.
Sbarro Italian restaurant is under construction in the mall near Joslin’s and is scheduled to open in October.
Sbarro, headquartered in Commack, N.Y., develops and operates a chain of family-style Italian restaurants under the Sbarro name. By mid-1996, Sbarro had more than 780 restaurants in operation, including more than 500 company-operated stores and more than 200 operated by franchisees. Sbarro’s Cheyenne location will be a company-owned store.
“We are pleased to develop new businesses for southeastern Wyoming,´ said Ethan Levine, Frontier Mall manager. “For Sbarro to choose Frontier Mall reflects not only on the viability of our corner of the state but Wyoming as a whole.”Wyo. starts entrepreneur course
LARAMIE – A new training program for Wyoming’s entrepreneurs is being launched this fall, with courses scheduled in eight communities around the state, including Cheyenne and Laramie.
The NxLevel Training Course on Entrepreneurship replaces and expands on the Wyoming Department of Commerce’s FastTrac program, which provided training to some 800 current and prospective Wyoming entrepreneurs.
“The NxLevel course will do everything FastTrac did – and more,” Wyoming Small Business Development Director Diane Wolverton said in Laramie, noting that FastTrak is still getting rave reviews from participants.
NxLevel is sponsored by the state’s Small Business Development Center, the Commerce Department’s Economic and Community Development Division and U S West.
Community project may expand
LARAMIE – A University of Wyoming pilot project to help smaller cities and towns with community development has been so successful in Laramie, Pine Bluffs and two other communities that it may be expanded.
The Cooperative Community Assistance Program was a nine-month program developed by the Business Assistance Center in the UW College of Business and the Wyoming Rural Development Council.
“Communities in Wyoming often do not have the resources to hire someone full time to seek and manage grants or loans that can be used to benefit community residents,´ said Connie Nyberg, a UW graduate student who developed the project.
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CHEYENNE – Higher speed limits on interstate highways in Colorado and Wyoming may be helping divert truckers from driving through Old Town Fort Collins to take the U.S. Highway 287 cutoff north to Laramie, according to Ron Phillips, transportation services director for the City of Fort Collins.But four or five years of construction on Interstate 80 between Cheyenne and Laramie and on Interstate 25 between Wellington and the Wyoming-Colorado state line won’t help, Phillips said.
Phillips was in Cheyenne recently to meet with the Greater Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce Transportation Committee to discuss long-term transportation planning, including the so-called “triangle…

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