Kanye West has bought 2 ranches in Wyoming this year and was just denied a permit to build a 'meditation' amphitheater on one of them. Here's everything we know about his plans.
- Kanye West recently bought two multimillion-dollar ranches in Wyoming that are roughly 50 to 60 miles apart.
- He had plans to build an amphitheater on one of them but, according to TMZ, was told to pause construction due to a lack of proper permits.
- This isn't West's first real-estate venture. In September, Business Insider reported that he was forced to tear down four dome-like structures on his California property that were supposed to be temporary prototypes for homeless housing.
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In September, Business Insider reported that West bought a ranch that was listed at $14 million outside of Cody, Wyoming. The ranch, which is named Monster Lake Ranch, includes a restaurant and saloon, a ranch-style event venue, a maintenance shop, an office building, horse barns, corrals, sheds, and a shooting range.
Then, on November 18, TMZ reported that West bought another ranch outside of Cody, Wyoming for $14.495 million. This ranch, which is called Bighorn Mountain Ranch, boasts 6,713 acres and includes everything from heated helicopter pads to walk-in saunas.
Before there were the Wyoming ranches, there was the Wyoming merchandise
In 2018, West hosted an exclusive listening party for his album "Ye" at a ranch outside of Jackson Hole, Wyoming. According to Rolling Stone, he flew celebrities and members of the media out to the remote area to listen to his new music around a bonfire.
To fit with the Wyoming theme, after the listening party, shirts and sweatshirts with the word "Wyoming" written across them hit West's website with prices as high as $145 each. His fans were thrilled. According to Highsnobiety, he sold $500,000 worth of the merch in just 30 minutes.
All of this past Wyoming hype brings us to November 2019: Kanye West is now, twice over, a landowner in the state.
So what, exactly, is Kanye West doing in Wyoming?
Both of West's newly purchased properties are right outside of Cody, a town in northwestern Wyoming that's home to 9,826 people.
Cody, which is known as the Rodeo Capital of the World, is 97 miles from Yellowstone National Park and nearly 300 miles from Jackson Hole, the most unequal place in the US. The median home value in Cody is $214,500; the median household income is $56,356.
West has spent the past few months settling into the town he now calls home. According to a report by The Daily Beast, he even introduced himself to the town's mayor and was spotted in a picture with a swim team outside a local restaurant.
A source told People that he plans to use the $14 million ranch he just purchased, Bighorn Mountain Ranch, as a permanent venue for Sunday Services, a pop-up church service. According to the source, more and more people are attending the weekly events, so West wants a space that can fit them all.
"He doesn't want to have to turn people away. He needs a 'home' for the service and decided to make the 'home' Wyoming. This is why he bought another property," the source told People.
West was denied a building permit to build a massive amphitheater on Monster Lake Ranch, called the "West Meditation Large Impact Structure"
A building application for a 70,684-square-foot amphitheater called the "West Meditation Large Impact Structure" was submitted in October, according to a report by the Cody Enterprise.
On November 20, AP News reported that West was ordered to stop construction on his property because it was taking place without a permit.
Although the topic of West's facility was originally on the agenda of a county board meeting that took on November 19, TMZ reported that the proposed plan never made it in front of the Park County Planning and Zoning Commission because West decided to change the intended purpose of the land to residential use.
According to an article by The New Yorker, West is believed to be using an old saloon on Monster Lake Ranch as a recording studio and has been living in the main house with his family.
Kim Kardashian, West's wife, told Jimmy Fallon on the Tonight Show that she envisions spending summers and some weekends on the property. She has also posted several photos of her family spending time there.
This isn't West's first venture into real-estate development
"I'm going to be one of the biggest real-estate developers of all time, like what Howard Hughes was to aircrafts and what Henry Ford was to cars," West said in an interview in 2018.
But luck - and the law - was not on his side when he was forced to tear down four "Star Wars"-inspired domes on his 300-acre property in California back in September.
As Business Insider previously reported, these homes were supposed to be temporary prototypes for homeless housing. However, after noise complaints from neighbors, county officials discovered that the structures were built without proper permits. West was then given 45 days to obtain the permits or tear down the homes - he settled on the latter.
In addition to this venture in real-estate development, West is no stranger to dropping millions on homes across the US. In 2017, West and Kim sold a Bel Air mansion for $17.8 million - over $6 million more than what they bought it for in 2013. Then, last winter, West surprised Kim with a $14 million, four-bedroom condo in Miami Beach. However, according to an article by Page Six, West later pulled out of the deal. Their main residence, a 15,667-square-foot estate in Hidden Hills, California, is said to be worth $60 million.
A representative for West did not immediately respond to Business Insider's request for comment.