Lamar’s Arby’s Venture Finds New Backer




LVP Food Service Concepts, LLC will become the new principal in the development of an Arby’s franchise restaurant at 1002 North Main in Lamar.  Mayor Kirk Crespin explained the situation during the June 12th city council meeting.  Crespin provided some historic background on how Arbys was considered as a viable venture following a comprehensive listing of business desires in the area from an analysis firm called the Buxton Group.   A subsequent search spanning over three years had the city and Flynn Restaurant Group entering negotiations for the venture, including the demolition of the former building, surveys and an environmental study by the EPA.  Unfortunately, the costs involved in the process put the estimated figure at twice the original for construction and after a series of contract extensions on the property purchase, Flynn backed out.

However, the parent firm of TA 76, the former Pilot Truck Stop, LV Petroleum, expressed an interest once it was learned that any development for the former Burger King restaurant did not make any progress.  LV Petroleum’s food development division began negotiations with the city as they were already invested in bringing Chuckie’s Cheesesteak and the KFC franchise into their newly acquired truck stop, also on North Main Street.  LVP will use local contractors and will compensate Flynn Restaurant Group for their time and expenditures over the past two years.  “We hope to see the groundbreaking before the year is out,” explained Crespin who added the new contract requires Arbys to be open for business within two years.

The council approved the $30,000 purchase price of land at 508 South 6th, north of the Lamar Community Building.  The council has been mindful of the acute lack of parking facilities at the LCB when larger events have been scheduled.  The number of new parking spaces will be determined at a later date.  Administrator Evans said beyond the purchase price, the city will need to consider the cost of land development, turning three empty lots into an asphalted parking area.  The funds were approved to be taken, out of cycle, from the city’s Building Finance Corporation.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife informed the City of Lamar, it has received conditional approval for a $25,000 request toward the development of a proposed archery range adjacent to North Gateway Park.  City Treasurer, Kristin Schwartz, told the council the next step for the Shooting Range Grant Program will be provide CPW with a potential work timeline.  She also informed the council that a grant window will open in February for inquires for a grant to help fund a proposed new playground for the east side of Willow Creek Park.

City Administrator, Rob Evans noted his Coffee with Rob session on June 28th has been cancelled, but the 7am coffee gathering for the 21st is still scheduled at Rivals.  The Lamar Chamber of Commerce is holding its first of five monthly Farm Markets starting this Saturday, June 17th from 8am to 1pm.  Evans introduced Mike Pickett, the city’s CGI representative, to the council.  CGI was contracted in 2018 to produce a series of videos highlighting the benefits of a business or families moving to Lamar.  The videos, which averaged 120,000 visits per year over five years, will be updated to reflect the economic, business and outdoor amenities that have transpired over the past several years for Lamar residents.

The council approved the annual special events permit for the Sand and Sage Round-Up to host its beer garden at the county fairgrounds during the fair.  The beer garden will be in operation August 10th through the 12th.

The council approved several appointments to various boards including Clifford Boxley who was re-appointed to a five-year term on the Lamar Utilities Board.  The Lamar Historic Preservation Advisory Board was on a hiatus during the COVID-19 pandemic since 2020 and there had been several staffing changes during that period.  Board members, Jennifer Mortimeyer, Stephanie Gonzales, Galan Burnett, Jacob Peterson, and Trevor LaCost were re-appointed for staggered three-year terms extending to 2026.  The members plan to meet on the third Tuesday of July, October, January and April with work sessions as needed.  The pandemic also impacted meetings of the Lamar Building Finance Corporation and those members were also re-appointed including Rob Evans, Kristin Schwartz, Gary Oxley, Chris Wilkinson and Norman Arends with terms extending to 2033 in some instances.  The council tabled some needed liaison appointments following the addition of Mike Duffy as a new council member several months ago.  The council agreed to postpone finalizing the appointments until all council members were present to discuss their options and interests.  The city sends councilpersons to 19 various organizations and committees for periodic updates.

A request from SECED, Southeast Colorado Economic Development, was tabled for more discussion on the request for $15,000 in funding to complete the curb and gutter requirement for three homes on South 8th Street in Lamar by SECED’s housing contractor.  Lamar invested $69,813 of its American Rescue Plan Act funds for its contribution to a six-county housing construction plan for single-family, housing units.

The council discussed Resolution 22-04-02, “Establishing a New Residential Development and Construction Incentive Program” but tabled any action until more detailed clarification to some of the contract language was completed.  The program is intended to promote the construction of new housing units in the City of Lamar as new construction has been described at a literal stand-still with few or no residential permits being sought.

The council went into an executive session for a personnel matter under CRS Section 24-6-402(4)(f) with the City Administrator.
By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: Chamber of CommerceCity of LamarConsumer IssuesCOVID-19Featured


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