If you haven’t already seen it, there’s a rather large building currently under construction that’s sharing a parking lot with the well-known popcorn and ice cream shop, Colby Ridge, as well as LaMar’s Donuts and Coffee, and it’s raising many questions.
When asked about the building’s potential, students hoped for a restaurant as an alternative to the cafeteria, “I’d really like to see a grocery store because driving to Walmart and HyVee is time consuming,” said sophomore Pre-Allied Health major, Brittany Fast.
“It looks big enough to be a Chipotle or something else like a gym or workout center,” said junior Social Work major Taylor Young.
To inform the students who were hoping for a new place to eat or hangout in within walking distance, the building is still available for rent.
Erika Efken, manager of Colby Ridge, says, “They haven’t told us what it’s going to be yet. I think it might become some type of office building like American Family Insurance or something similar, but they haven’t found anyone to rent it out yet. With the small shared parking area, a company that might bring in many customers isn’t a great idea.”
Ironwood Builders, the company responsible for the new building, is a contracting firm based in Lincoln since 2006, co-owned by Roger Bumgarner and Joe Steinbach.
To shed some light on the history of the area, Ironwood Builders and Contractor tore down the old Colby Ridge and LaMar’s in 2008 and rebuilt it in 2013. The actual construction for the unfinished building didn’t start till last spring, “We are hoping to be finished soon,” said Bumgarner, “There’s only a couple more things left to finish. After that we are going to start looking for tenants to rent it out.”
A potential future tenant would be a company that doesn’t pose any competition to Colby Ridge or LaMar’s and has a business schedule between the hours of 9 in the morning to 5 in the evening to reduce traffic in the parking lot. “Even though there will be more than 40 parking spots available after everything is finished, we would still like to have a business that doesn’t cause too much congestion.” said Bumgarner.
New businesses in the area could bring more customers to Colby Ridge and LaMar’s Donuts and Coffee, which is a benefit for everyone involved.
Caroline Guchu is a junior studying communication.