Simplified: The city this week announced plans to bring a new, nearly $100 million development to downtown, coinciding with the sale of a segment of the railyard. Here's what you need to know.

Why it matters

  • This project is nearly two decades in the making – dating back to 2005, when South Dakota's congressional delegation helped make it possible for the city to purchase the rail yard.
  • Des Moines-based developer Christensen Development is bringing the vision for the project, which will include office space, retail and an estimated 230 apartments targeting young professionals, according to developer Jake Christensen, who has 20 years of experience specific to developing downtowns.
  • The city is offering the developer an incentive of $8 million in tax-increment financing as part of the project – a decision that'll have to be approved by the City Council as a next step in the process. The goal is to break ground this fall on the office building and parking ramp.
"A healthy downtown means a healthy city," Planning Director Jeff Eckhoff said. "It is a focal point and amenity for our entire city."

Tell me more about the project

The development – which doesn't yet have a catchy name – will sit on a four-acre parcel just south of 8th Street, across from Pendar Properties' Railyard Flats development.

It'll consist of an 180-stall parking ramp and three buildings, including:

  • a 50,000-square-foot, five-story office building with an anchor tenant that's expected to be announced soon,
  • and two residential buildings with 280 units that "aren't luxury," Christensen said, noting they're going to be aimed at being accessible for young professionals.

The first floor of the office building will include space for retail and restaurants.

Show me some pics

What happens next?

City Councilors will have to approve the tax-increment financing, and if all goes to plan, the project will break ground late fall on the ramp and office building.

Then the goal is to break ground on the apartment buildings no later than spring 2026.