Bass Pro Shops, America’s most popular outdoor store, has signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) to be part of the new 200-acre Copper Ridge development on Colorado Springs’ north side, according to developer Gary Erickson who negotiated the deal. This new location of a Bass Pro Shops® Sportsman’s Center off Interstate 25 and North Gate Boulevard will overlook the Air Force Academy, and with its convenient location, will attract tourists and travelers to the entire Pikes Peak region and will initially generate at least 250 jobs.
“We will break ground on the approximately 117,000 square foot store in April, and expect it to open in the summer of 2013,” Erickson said. “We will start preparing the site next month. I am grateful for the collective and broad-based support from the Mayor, City Council, and Planning Commission, together with the Air Force Academy, Colorado Division of Transportation and other entities, without whom this significant undertaking would not be possible,” he said, also adding that it’s been an eight-year planning process.
The recently completed North Gate Boulevard, a $10 million investment by local developers, creates easy access to Bass Pro Shops from the Air Force Academy, Interstate 25, Highway 83, and eventually Powers Boulevard when it is extended to Interstate 25. The partnership with City of Colorado Springs will continue with improvements to infrastructure related to this exciting new development.
Nationally, Bass Pro Shops will host over 112 million people visiting their 58 stores across America and Canada this year; the average customer stays 2 ½ hours and drives an average distance of 50+ miles. Bass Pro Shops was recently named by Advertising Age magazine as one of the Top 10 Hottest Brands in America along with name brands such as Old Spice, M&M’s, iPad and Droid. Also, Bass Pro Shops has been recognized numerous times for their conservation and outdoor education efforts.
“We are very excited to bring Bass Pro Shops to Colorado Springs and be part of this major development,” stated Johnny Morris, Founder of Bass Pro Shops. “The area’s long history of great fishing and hunting traditions along with this highly visible and accessible location make it the perfect place to allow us to better serve our many customers and all the outdoor enthusiasts that visit and live in this beautiful part of the country.”
The Bass Pro Shops store will be the first anchor in the Copper Ridge development that will eventually include up to 2,000,000 square feet of planned retail, restaurants, offices, residential lofts and a hotel.
Also included in this development will be the Colorado Grand Resort & Hotel, Inc., a family resort experience. This resort will feature a 30,000 square foot indoor/outdoor water park experience, a Colorado Grand Lobby with massive log and rock décor and family sized themed suites. This resort will open in 2014.
“The total number of jobs this will generate in the city will eventually number about 4,000,” Erickson said.
Colorado Springs Mayor Steve Bach said, “We look forward to welcoming Bass Pro Shops to our community and thank them for employing our citizens.”
Colorado Springs City Councilwoman Angela Dougan, whose City Council district includes the proposed site said, “In addition to bringing jobs to our area, it will be great for Colorado Springs to have an outdoor shopping experience that only Bass Pro Shops can bring to our community.”
“The great outdoors is vital to Colorado’s economy by contributing more than $10 billion annually and supporting more than 107,000 jobs,” said Ken Lund, Executive Director of Colorado’s Office of Economic Development and International Trade. “Bass Pro Shops and other outdoor retailers help fuel the passion for outdoor recreation that so many Coloradans have. The development at North Gate Boulevard is particularly exciting because of the great potential for so many new jobs.”
Bass Pro Shops’ unique, award-winning, mega-sized outdoor stores are known for combining retail with entertainment, conservation and outdoor education.
El Paso County Commissioner Darryl Glenn said, “It is great to see a major anchor store coming to Colorado Springs. This will keep tax revenues in El Paso County and provide a new local retail option for shoppers in the Pikes Peak region.”
More than just a fishing and hunting store, Bass Pro Shops will also offer equipment and clothing for hiking, backpacking, wildlife viewing, camping, outdoor cooking and more. A gift and nature center will also serve up a wide variety of outdoor-related items from lamps and dishes to bird feeders and furniture.
The expansive boat showroom will feature Tracker, Nitro, SunTracker, Tahoe, Grizzly and Mako boats built by Tracker Marine Group, the world’s largest manufacturer of fishing boats.
The Colorado Springs Bass Pro Shops Sportsman’s Center will feature the much- acclaimed Uncle Buck’s Fishbowl and Grill. This 15,000 square-foot nautical-themed entity located within the store, features a truly unique atmosphere and design geared for family fun and dining.
Twelve lanes, divided into two separate areas of 6 lanes each, offer customers the chance to bowl ‘in the ocean.’ Casual family dining will be available in the Grill where customers may select from a menu featuring a variety of appetizers, sandwiches, salads and burgers.
Bass Pro Shops’ unique exterior and interior motifs have branded them as visually appealing, high quality outdoor stores. The outdoors feel is brought indoors through massive log and rock work, large indoor aquariums and water features stocked with native fish species as well as an extensive collection of museum quality fish and wildlife mounts. Historic photos and exhibits will pay tribute to Colorado’s great outdoor heritage.