Shoshoni is preparing to grow – a lot.

The city annexed 113 acres of land this month, extending the city limits west to connect with the Wyoming Mushrooms farm.

“We just closed that gap,” City Clerk Chris Konija said. “That’s where the development is going to be for housing.”

Shoshoni is considering a mix of housing types for the property, with lot sizes ranging from a third of an acre to 5 acres, he said, as well as some businesses.

One person has already expressed interest in opening a restaurant and pub there, Shoshoni Mayor Joel Highsmith said.

“He’s ready to start construction as soon as we sell the land to him,” Highsmith said. “And his daughter wants to buy a few acres nearby and build a new house. She has two young children and she wants them to go to school in Shoshoni.

Shoshoni has arguably the “best school in the state,” Konija said, attracting students from across Fremont County — even those who live outside of the local district.

The city “would prefer” that these out-of-district families actually move to Shoshoni, Konija said, but the local lots currently available “do not allow for the construction of appropriate modern housing.”

Now, Konija said, these modern homes can be built in the newly annexed property west of town, which offers a “beautiful view” of the Wind River Canyon.

Mushroom farm

The Wyoming Business Council last month approved a $1.58 million matching grant to expand sewer infrastructure to the area.

The project will also extend service to 160 acres of Wyoming Mushrooms land.

The company plans to build 20 to 40 homes in the area to support its growing workforce, as well as a grocery store and cafe.

Konija called it a “catalytic development” that would “stimulate additional business activity” as well as local housing construction, which is in “high demand”.

“When habitable accommodation becomes available at Shoshoni, it is usually under contract within two weeks,” Konija said in her WBC grant application, adding, “Most of (our) current workforce resides outside of Shoshoni due to lack of availability..”

Wyoming Mushrooms donated $50,000 to support the project’s sewer expansion, which is expected to be completed by June 2023.

Hotel

The WBC also approved a $25,000 planning grant to study the feasibility of a full-service hotel at Shoshoni.

Konija said the city will use the feasibility study as a marketing tool to generate interest from the hospitality industry.