Yesterday, the Wyoming Business Council approved in state grants and loans $4.3 million for the Enhanced Use Land Lease development.
The City of Cheyenne requested a $3 million grant and a $3.5 million loan as funds that will be used towards infrastructure; water and sewer main, as well as road improvements to be appropriated to the Enhanced Use Lease (EUL). Currently the City of Cheyenne is in the process of annexing the property; after development the end use of the development will be mixed including housing and commercial spaces. The housing will serve as a solution for the housing deficit in the area for single airmen.
“We have a huge issue right now when trying to find affordable and available housing for E1-E4, our more junior-level airmen.” explained Former 90th Missile Wing Commander, Steve Kravitsky. “The market in Cheyenne is such that these airmen are unable to find viable housing.”
Comprised of two phases, this $95.6 million project will be conducted by the currently approved lessor, Balfour Betty. This company has a strong reputation internationally for executing these kinds of projects.
During the presentation to the Wyoming Business Council Board of Directors, Robert Briggs from Cheyenne Planning & Economic Development Director shared that the development of this property has the potential of establishing housing for 500-700 military airmen.
“Sometimes we forget that the Air Force is one of the largest employers in the State of Wyoming. We are on the cusp of a modernization program for three facilities, that have a similar mission, across the United States. And there is the potential of $90 billion to be funneled in to make improvements into the facility and upgrade, to be able fulfill their mission. Part of us being able to really maximize the federal investment for Cheyenne and for the State, being able to help support FE Warren Air Force Base and their mission” shared Briggs.
Briggs further shared that these types of investments can be a catalyst for further investment in the community. The City is currently challenged with the proposal because it was issued declaring the land “as-is.” The location, which will enhance the look of the community from I-25, creates enticing developments near the interstate and can act as an incredibel gateway to visitors to the area as well.
“GBSD can bring $5 to $10 billion to the Cheyenne area” declared Dale Steenbergen, Greater Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce CEO/President, in reference to the modernization of our base’s missiles. “We need to invest in the mission expansion of our base, we need to invest in housing solution for airmen because it positions our business community to better serve the military through the GBSD Process.”
There are a vast number of airmen who currently have to find housing in northern Colorado because of the limited availability of affordable housing in our community. When surveyed, these airmen expressed a desire to live in Cheyenne, and the EUL will address this airmen displacement issue.
The Wyoming Business Council vote and recommendation will next be discussed at the June 21st State Loan and Investment Board for final approval.
Community members are welcome to express their support and participate in the progress of this development by contacting the Greater Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce at (307) 638-3388.
Photo By: #IDLERPHOTO