Sioux Falls preparing for growthAugust 2, 2023
Officials hosted Heartland Energy for a tour of projects designed to fulfill city’s master plan
Over the past thirteen years, the city of Sioux Falls, SD has experienced population growth of 55,000 residents.
That is a nearly 36% increase since the census was performed in 2010. In the year 2022 alone, the city added an estimated 6,284 residents. The city’s population today stands at an estimated 208,884.
In order to keep up with growth, the city must take steps to expand infrastructure and services.
As a customer of Heartland Energy, Sioux Falls city officials hosted the board of directors for their July monthly meeting.
The meeting was held at the city’s reclamation facility before board members and staff toured areas of the city served by the Sioux Falls Light and Power Division.
Poised for Growth
The city of Sioux Falls went through a comprehensive process to adopt a plan for future growth and development, addressing the infrastructure, public safety, and service needs of the community.
The resulting master plan included plans for new and reconstructed facilities to address the needs of the community.
Water Reclamation Plant
The Sioux Falls Water Reclamation Plant is undergoing a $215 million expansion, the first major expansion project in over 40 years since the original facility was built. It will rehabilitate the current facility and increase capacity by 50 percent.
The improvements will extend the useful life of the overall system and address growth and economic development for the city and region over the next 20 years. It will also ensure all regulatory requirements are met.
Outside the city, the facility also serves the communities of Renner, Brandon and Tea, with other communities planned for the future.
The project is funded through ARPA grant funding and State Revolving Fund loans. It broke ground in 2022 and is slated for completion in 2025.
Public Safety Campus
A $50 million public safety campus is under construction and expected to be completed this fall. In September 2020, the city council voted unanimously to approve bonding to fund the project.
The 42-acre campus will boast about 100,000 square feet of training facilities. It will include administrative offices, classroom space and a dispatch center.
State of the art classrooms and simulation labs will aid in emergency medical service, defensive tactics and reality-based training.
Burn towers and structures replicating residential and commercial building styles found locally create a realistic and dynamic training ground for first responders.
A range training facility will include capabilities such as simulations using audio and visual elements and a 15-lane shooting range.
A large, paved course will allow fire/EMS drivers and police officers to hone vehicle driving skills, vehicle safety, vehicle pursuit tactics and other scenarios.
Light and Power
The Electric Light and Power Division of the city of Sioux Falls provides public power throughout a defined service territory in the city. They serve 2,900 customers including governmental entities, private residences and businesses. They also maintain over 22,500 streetlights.
Sioux Falls is planning to build a new campus to house both the Light and Traffic teams. Construction is anticipated to start in 2024. It is scheduled to be an all-electric building and will participate in Heartland Energy’s Energy ONE program.
The city is also constructing a new 5.5-mile dedicated circuit, known as Circuit 13, from the city substation to the Water Reclamation Plant, new Light, Power and Traffic campus and Public Safety campus.
Circuit 13 provides a triple layer of redundant power for the three campuses.
Other tour highlights
Other highlights of the tour included current and planned growth areas within the city’s service territory as well as other locations receiving electricity from the city of Sioux Falls, and thereby Heartland Energy.
The Sioux Falls Regional Airport is currently constructing a new parking ramp to include up to 30 electric vehicle chargers. They are also in the process of adding new airplane hangars. Campus infrastructure improvements were made ahead of the building projects.
The current operations center for the city’s Light and Power team is located near the airport. It also includes the water purification campus which is currently the largest electrical load for the city.
Downtown Sioux Falls was explored including the Cascade Apartments which is home to 300 units. The main level of the building consists of several commercial businesses, many of which utilize the Heartland Energy Growth Incentive program.
The tour wrapped up with the Denny Sanford Premier Center – a nationally recognized entertainment venue. The facility saved $1.2 million during their first few years of operation by participating in the Energy ONE program through Heartland Energy.
Heartland Energy is excited to see the growth happening in Sioux Falls and commends city officials for taking the necessary steps to ensure the proper infrastructure and services are in place to accommodate the growing population.