A Second Business Improvement District in Sioux Falls?

Could the property owners, residents, and business owners establish the West Sioux Business Improvement District?

Just as property owners within Downtown Sioux Falls established themselves back in 1989, could the property owners of the West Sioux Area do the same? With all the development being proposed, designed, along with the Sioux Falls Arena, the Event Center, Howard Wood Field, and of course, the Sioux Empire Fairgrounds, could this area become our second Business District?

Citing S.D.C.L 9-55 (1-22) - we can envision this area of town becoming a "grand entrance" to Downtown, of which also happens to be "Mainstreet Business District".

What if we were to establish boundaries to be Russell Street starting at reference point of I-29 Intersection, eastbound to the intersection of Russell St and Minnesota Ave (northern border); while the southern border to include I-29 along Madison Street eastbound to North Menlo Avenue, north bound to Brookings Street, eastbound to Minnesota Avenue, while Minnesota connects northbound to Russell Street; while the district shall include the area starting at Burnside Street and Madison Street, southeast to N. West Avenue connecting northbound to include North Lake Avenue, northbound to Madison Street.

West Sioux Business Improvement District

Under SDCL 9-55-2 we could create a tax or fee assessed on the district to help provide for:

  • The acquisition, construction, maintenance, and operation of public off-street parking facilities for the benefit of the district area;
  • Improvement of any public place or facility in the district area, including landscaping and plantings;
  • Construction or installation of convention or event centers, pedestrian shopping malls or plazas, sidewalks, including moving sidewalks, parks, meeting and display facilities, bus stop shelters, lighting, benches or other seating furniture, sculptures, trash receptacles, shelters, fountains, skywalks, and pedestrian and vehicular overpasses and underpasses or any useful or necessary public improvement;
  • Leasing, acquiring, constructing, reconstructing, extending, maintaining, or repairing parking lots or parking garages, both above and below ground, or other facilities for the parking of vehicles, including the power to install such facilities in public areas, whether such areas are owned in fee or by easement, in the district area;
  • Creation and implementation of a plan for improving the general architectural design of public areas in the district area;
  • The development of any activities and promotion of the district area;
  • Maintenance, repair, and reconstruction of any improvements or facilities authorized by this chapter;
  • Any other project or undertaking for the betterment of the facilities in the district area, whether the project is capital or noncapital in nature;
  • Enforcement of parking regulations within the district area; and
  • Employing or contracting for personnel, including administrators for any improvement or promotional program under this chapter, and providing for any service necessary or proper to carry out the purposes of this chapter.

Why we may feel the creation of the West Sioux Business Improvement District should matter to the City of Sioux Falls, and its citizens, is that we could foresee this area of town becoming a grand entrance to Downtown Sioux Falls. Not only does it house the "Entertainment District" - Premier Center, Convention Center, Sioux Falls Arena, Howard Wood Field, The Ballpark, not to mention the W.H Lyons Fairgrounds (county fair), it also includes public parks such as Lyons Park, Elmwood Park, Covell/Terrace Park, not to mention many Community Ball Diamonds.

Any such tax to be created, assessed on the business activity within the area, or any apportioned combination of fees as approved by the governing body could be used to help improve upon, and develop public areas of the district itself.

By establishing the West Sioux Business Improvement District, it would allow the "Mayor" to establish a "Business Improvement Board" and to appoint any combination of board members to the board of whom are to be business owners, property owners, residents, in order to work closely with the Mayor and City Council of which the board shall make recommendations to the governing body for the establishment of a plan or plans for improvements in the business area.

If we are correct, as per SDCL 9-55-9 we would have to hold a public hearing allowing all property owners, residents, business operators to participate in any such discussion to create such a district.

What are your thoughts of establishing the West Sioux Business Improvement District within the City of Sioux Faflls, in our efforts to help make the city a much better place for future generations? And do you foresee the creation of a business improvement district as a benefit to the city as it wishes, and desires to improve upon the area?

Our Vision: We foresee one day in the future, West Madison Street from I-29 to W. Russell Street as a future "commercial strip" much like North Phillips is to Downtown Sioux Falls; whereas we also envision Burnside Street adding on to that commercial strip as it loops southwest connecting to North West Avenue, while you also have W. Russell Street from I-29 east to Minnesota Ave of which could form a northern boundary. The total area could become a "Grand Entrance" to Downtown Sioux Falls, all of which, we have the W.H Lyons Fairgrounds in the area which can become part of the whole Entertainment District itself.

I believe, under the right Mayor, and City Council, we could in effect, create such a district, with the intent of investing in the area, in much the same manner of which the city does with Downtown Sioux Falls. I believe the two districts could one day become lasting partners in helping to make the city a much better place. The two areas of the city have so much in common as they both utilize "entertainment" and walkability features as a common theme.

IF the residents of the City of Sioux Falls should happen to work to establish this district, it may become an interesting concept allowing not only the City to help develop the area, form future plans for the area, but we now have this awesome "District Board" of which could bridge that gap between the County, and the City, in hopes of finding a new vision for the entire area, including the W.H Lyon Fairgrounds Property, connecting the County Fairgrounds to the City's Entertainment and Park Venues along W. Madison Street.

For all those who may be interested in this concept, we would love to hear from you, your thoughts, and creative ideas on how to make this area of town a much better and more vibrant area tomorrow.