Saturday, September 28, 2013

How many Democrats would it take to fill in "The Hole" in downtown Cheyenne?

The mayor spoke to a small gathering of the Laramie County Democratic Grassroots Coalitions on Thursday night. He was supposed to keep his remarks to a half hour as he wanted to leave some time for questions and get home after a long day. We also wanted to get at those homemade cupcakes that Katherine brought to the gathering. 

Hizzoner brought a Power Point presentation. Normally this is cause for dread, as Powerpoints can be deadly dull. But his was quite interesting. All about the rebuilding of Cheyenne's infrastructure and planning for the future.

The good news? Cheyenne is growing at a rate of 1.5% to 2.5% a year. None of the Dems in the room asked what percentage of those are Democrats. About one-third, I'd say, as that's about the current rate of registered Democrats in Laramie County. Cheyenne is the Dem stronghold while the county's many Republicans tend to water down our influence, especially when it comes to writing wacky letters to the local paper.

This all gets a little dicey as I'm not very good with math, despite Sister Norbert's endless algebra drills. What would this problem look like on a quiz?

The City of Cheyenne has a 2012 populations of 61,303. The average growth rate is 2 percent. Thirty-four percent of those are Democrats. If newly-arrived Dems were used for some practical purpose, such as filling in The Hole downtown, how long would it take to fill in The Hole?

First of all, I'd have to know the dimensions of The Hole and those of your average Democrat, 18 and older. Once I had those numbers, the solution would be a breeze. Even English majors such as myself might be able to do the calculations.

But let's save that for another day. What we really want to talk about is progress. Cheyenne voters approved a big batch of public works projects during the most recent election. We have a new and improved Botanic Gardens in the works, as well as a new public safety building downtown. The "West Edge" project (already underway) will redesign that part of downtown with parks and parkways. Developers have already approached the city about housing and retail options, according to the mayor. We have a new airport in the works, as well as new downtown street lighting. Pershing Blvd., named for Blackjack himself, is being totally revamped. A new roundabout will debut in November that will solve the quandary of collisions at the intersection of three of the city's main drags. Why we have three major streets converging at one spot is probably a question for city historians. A new Safeway is planned for that neighborhood, and we'll be getting a new Wal-Mart at I-80 and College Dr. New sewer and water lines are being built to connect the Swan Ranch development with Cheyenne.

Everything's up to date in Cheyenne City.

This does not please everyone. Some people are wildly indignant about the roundabout. Others complain about all the streets being torn up. Some don't want to see Cheyenne grow at all, afraid it will lost its "Old West" feel. We don't want to be like Denver, some say about this other "Old West" town that long ago decided to live in the present instead of the past.

Remember: Wyoming is what America was. That's one of our old state tourism mottos. I'm glad it was retired.

Now, can anyone help me with this math problem. Just how many square feet cubic feet is your average incoming immigrating Democrat, anyway?

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