[A story from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette gives an idea of the level of competition both for retail dollars and for economic development aid to attract the big boys.]
On eastbound Interstate 70 in Pennsylvania, not far from the West Virginia border, a billboard urges drivers to check out Ace Sporting Goods, a firearms dealer that claims to have served Western Pennsylvania hunters for more than half a century.
Ace owner George Romanoff doesn’t generally do many billboards, but then his South Strabane store isn’t always heading into what may be the perfect firestorm.
Within a month, a 175,000-square-foot Cabela’s outdoor store will open just off a new interstate exit less than five miles from the Pennsylvania border and adjacent to Cabela’s massive distribution center. Not to be outdone, Pennsylvania officials are negotiating to put a Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World store just off Interstate 79, near the Meadows racetrack and a proposed outlet mall. Romanoff figures the store would be about two miles from his place.