Lloyd Companies broke ground on The Steel District on Aug. 18.
In the words of Sioux Falls Development Foundation Board Chair Pat Costello: It was “one of the most exciting groundbreakings we’ve had in a long time.”
The Steel District is a seven-acre redevelopment of the Sioux Steel property in downtown Sioux Falls adjacent to Falls Park.
“It’s going to have a profound impact on our skyline and what people view downtown Sioux Falls to be,” Costello said.
This was echoed throughout the ceremony by each speaker.
“We’re building something that’s not (for) 100 years into the future. It’s 200 years,” Lloyd's Co-founder Craig Lloyd said. “I won’t be here, but maybe my great-grandkids will be, and they’ll carry on the vision.”
Vision brought us to this day, and it dates back decades, to city leaders from Steve Metli to Dave Munson who paved the way for the redevelopment by cleaning up the downtown area and building Phillips Avenue through to Falls Park.
Or, in the case of the Rysdon family, owners of Sioux Steel, it’s a history and vision that goes back five generations.
“And now, of course, we’re sharing (our) home with you,” Sioux Steel CEO Scott Rysdon said. “We’re very, very happy that the time is right here … it’s time to open up this last resource for the city.”
The Steel District is a riverfront destination where people can live, work and stay. That includes three restaurants from Twin Cities restauranteur Josh Thoma, who also was on hand for the groundbreaking.
“I couldn’t hope to have better business partners than (Lloyd’s) Chris Thorkelson, Jake Quasney and Dan Doyle,” he said. “These guys are some of the most salt-of-the-earth people I’ve ever had the pleasure of doing business with.”
Although this day was delayed a year due to the pandemic, “this is truly a game-changer for Uptown, and this project we’re doing is a small part of things to come and … we’re grateful and honored to be part of it,” Lloyd’s CEO Chris Thorkelson said.
Lloyd leadership all thanked the City of Sioux Falls, Minnehaha County and the Sioux Falls School District for supporting tax increment financing that made The Steel District possible.
“We wanted to create a 100-year vision, and that’s no small task, because you also have to be able to pay for it,” Executive Vice president Jake Quasney said. “We’re bringing a first-class hotel that’s going to really set the standard for our community both on the convention and hospitality side. The office is going to be an awesome place to go to work every day. There’s incredible opportunities to live here … and that experience is going to be carried through everything we do.”
The project demonstrates the “one Sioux Falls spirit” the city tries to foster, Mayor Paul TenHaken said.
“It means collaboration and congeniality that we need to get stuff done,” he said. “To Craig, and Lloyd Companies, you guys always follow through with what you say you’re going to do and that’s what I appreciate about you.”
Sen. John Thune also spoke at the groundbreaking, recognizing that “this is a great partnership of a legacy company, a legacy family in this area, working together with a developer who has the capacity, the capability and the energy to turn this into a real, real treasure for Sioux Falls,” he said. “This is going to eclipse and dwarf anything we’ve seen before … Sioux Falls really has become a jewel on the prairie, and it’s a magnet now.”
You can begin experiencing The Steel District in 2023 when the first residents and businesses are expected to move in.
“This city will have options and alternatives unrivaled for a city of 200,000,” Rysdon said. “We’re small but we’re scrappy. Welcome to The Steel District.”