Fall is finally here, the South Dakota State Fair is right around the corner, and school is coming on fast. The pace is picking up quickly. As you probably noticed it is for us as well.
In my last column we talked about the Coborns’ land acquisition and our intention of putting in roads and water and sewer yet this summer. As you can see those projects are well underway. By the end of the year, we hope to have all of 24th Street from Highway 37 to Idaho Avenue SE completed, and Kansas Avenue from Coborns to 26th Street completed as well. This includes the water, sewer and storm sewer as well. We will likely allow the roadbed to sit over the winter, and then asphalt the roads sometime next spring. Completion dates for these projects are set for May of next year. In talking with several key prospects for the area, it was critical that the infrastructure be put into place yet this year to give them the necessary utility infrastructure they need to move ahead with their projects. Hopefully, by the time you read this we may even have an announcement to share with you.
Many of you will have heard by the time you read this column about Dakota Provisions’ significant expansion. For those of you who haven’t heard, Dakota Provisions has committed to expanding its operations here in Huron. As part of that expansion they intend on acquiring GHDC’s spec building in our West Industrial Park along with the surrounding 24 acres, and equip it and operate it as part of their “RTE” or Ready-to-Eat operations. I’d like to allay any fears now; there will be no “raw-side” operations at the facility. The finishing and processing operations, including the cooking, will all be contained within the building. All of the raw-side input for DP’s operations will continue to be processed at their primary location, east of town. In total this expansion is projected to cost approximately $30 Million and will eventually employ up to 250 people.
In order to facilitate this expansion, the community will have to meet certain conditions to create additional housing for the new employees. Here in our office we are working with a number of developers to identify possible opportunities to do this, including single family homes, apartments, or even townhouses or duplexes. We hope to have a number of solutions by the end of the year to help alleviate the stress on the housing market within the next year and a half.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t talk about our good friends visiting our community while working on the Dakota Access pipeline. In our area, things have been going very well; too well in fact. Construction in our “spread” is about 3-5 weeks ahead of schedule. Unfortunately, that means we will begin to lose some of the people to areas to the North and South of us, as they haven’t fared as well. I want to extend a huge compliment, and express how proud I am, of this community. We have heard countless compliments about how wonderful our community has been and how well the workers have been treated. You should all be very proud of yourselves, as you’ve made their stay very warm and welcoming.
In closing, I’d like to congratulate Dakota Provisions and thank them for their commitment to our community. We are thankful that they selected our community to host their newest expansion.
Have a great fall season and I hope to see you at the State Fair!