Gateway communities around Grand Teton and Yellowstone national parks benefit greatly from the parks’ millions of annual visitors, who spent more than $750 million in the region in 2010. But Cody and other Wyoming communities east of Yellowstone could miss out on an emerging economic development opportunity because of fears about volcanic activity in the park.
Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead has made it an economic development priority for the state to attract large-scale data centers like a planned $112 million cloud computing hub to be built in Cheyenne by software giant Microsoft, Corp.
But a recent statewide assessment of Wyoming’s ability to attract and support such data centers found that some industry leaders are wary of locating facilities in the state’s northwestern corner, citing the risk of a volcanic eruption in Yellowstone Park.