Ending months of speculation, Vermont today announced plans to relocate the entire state to Denver, Colorado.
Citing desires to be closer to the capital of the outdoor industry, to the heartbeat of the outdoor recreation economy, and to Sancho’s Broken Arrow bar menu, Vermont also acknowledged that personal reasons had contributed to the final decision.
“My renovated farmhouse on 11 acres will be worth about $19 million on the Front Range,” said Vermont. “Needless to say, I’m pretty stoked about the move.”
The announcement marks the most humungous move to date for states seeking to grow their outdoor recreation economy. Because while economic development agencies have made national news by attracting publicly traded companies (“VF Corp relocates to Denver“) and major outdoor industry trade events (“Outdoor Retailer relocates to Denver“)—no one had previously convinced an entire state to “pack up their bags and move to Cherry Creek.”
Vermont, which has the square mileage of three Yellowstone National Parks and a population about the same as the Mile High City, began its RFP process nearly a year ago. The comprehensive process included a group date, a one-on-one date, and a weekly rose ceremony.
The ultimate decision was far from easy, as Vermont received compelling propositions from numerous qualified suitors. Other locations eliminated during the RFP process included Reno (“too hot”), Portland (“too rainy”), Duluth (“too many flowy mountain bike trails”) and Bozeman (“too many ex-Vermonters”).
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“With its surging population of outdoor recreation companies and its proximity to Eldora, Loveland Pass, and Mary Jane, Denver was really the perfect venue for us to relocate the entire state,” said Vermont. “But mainly we wanted to lock Denver down before the rest of California moved in.”
The relocation to Denver is anticipated to provide Vermont with numerous outdoor recreation economy benefits – such as eliminating the impact of a two-hour time difference at the start of every Outdoor Retailer trade show and shortening the distance to Boulder’s Outdoor Industry Association, also known as the Outdoor Industry Association.
The move is a major win for Colorado, as Vermont will deliver one of the most concentrated outdoor recreation economies in the country, with 3.5 outdoor recreation jobs per square mile and 54 outdoor recreation jobs per 1,000 citizens. Vermont also will bring its 25 mountain bike trail networks, 15 ski areas, 800 miles of groomed cross-country trails, 7,000 miles of rivers and streams, and one really, really big lake.
“This is a win for everybody. For Denver, for Vermont, and especially for that guy on the 16th street mall selling Sanders/Hickenlooper 2020 t-shirts,” Vermont added.
Photo by Jalan’s Place
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