You've probably noticed there is lots of construction around Cheyenne as of late. If you're frequently downtown, you can't wait until every single lane open on each street once again, especially for those roads minimized to just one lane. However, another spot at a busy intersection has one street closed off at I-180 and 5th in south Cheyenne.

The construction has 5th Street closed off as a thru street right at the intersection. However, 5th Street is still open. You just can't turn onto it from coming from the north or south on I-180, nor can you turn onto I-180 from 5th Street. There's no secret that construction was needed where the two streets intersect. However, that particular spot has been closed now for a little over a week.

Let's take a look at what's currently going on at I-180 and 5th Street...

Construction at I-180 and 5th Street

I'm no construction expert whatsoever, nor do I know if this is what's happening, but perhaps the entry way to the intersection at I-180 and 5th Street could be expanding? Given how busy the intersection can get at times, it seems feasible. For anyone that lives in south Cheyenne, you've probably seen the street blocked off, which leads to several homes to the west of I-180.

How long will the construction last? Who knows. Given how busy the road typically is next to such a big intersection in the city, it seems like a pretty big project (take that for what you will given my extreme lack of construction knowledge). But hey, the upside of any construction is that it's all for an improvement in the long run. So here's to things getting better, Cheyenne!

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CLASSIC CHEYENNE: The Cole Shopping Center

In December of 2020, Blue Federal Credit Union completed its new headquarters at the corner of Converse and Pershing in Cheyenne. Well, it’s not so much a ‘corner’ as it is the smooth edge of a roundabout, but anyway. Before Blue FCU built its new campus, the site was at one time a premier shopping destination for Cheyenne. From the 1950s through 2016 it was Cheyenne's Cole Shopping Center.

Local businessman Frank Cole bought the land that would become a Cheyenne gathering place in the 1950s when the corner of Converse and Pershing was the edge of town. Starting in 1952, three different Safeway grocery stores called the Cole home over its half-century of existence.  A plethora of other stores served the neighborhood too. From the movie theater to Blockbuster; there was the Cole Department Store, the fabric store, the East Branch of the Carnegie Library, and so much more.

As Cheyenne grew and changed, the Shopping Center fell into decline. Stores closed and new ones didn't take their places. The anchor of the area, Safeway, closed for good in 2016 with much of the rest following. In 2018 the buildings were demolished and the new construction began. 

The Cole was so integral to the neighborhood that when we asked on social media for folks’ memories we were flooded with hundreds of responses. 

Check out many of those memories below, along with several pictures of the Cole Shopping Center, mostly from near the end in the twenty-teens.

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