Shovel-ready in Arlington

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ACDC partners with Heartland and local banks to install infrastructure in industrial park

After years of preparation, a vision is about to become reality in Arlington.

Infrastructure will soon be installed in the city’s industrial park, including water, sewer, electric, roads, curb and gutter. The Arlington Community Development Corporation (ACDC) recently secured funding to complete four lots totaling roughly 20 acres.

Officials gather in Arlington to secure financing for infrastructure in the local industrial park. Pictured, back row, left to right: ACDC President Randy Jencks, Executive Director Jason Uphoff, Citizen States Bank President Wayne Fischer and Heartland Director of Economic Development Casey Crabtree. Front row, left to right: Interstate Battery Systems owners Tyler Henricksen and Jackie Henricksen, Arlington Mayor Amiel Redfish, ACDC Treasurer Merle Walter, Cortrust Bank Vice President Doug O’Neil, Halme Inc. owner Jeff Halme, and Citizens State Bank Vice President/Ag Loan Officer Craig Walker.

Heartland Consumers Power District, the city’s wholesale power supplier, along with Citizens State Bank and CorTrust Bank of Arlington, teamed up to finance the project.

Once construction is complete, ACDC will apply for Certified Ready Site status with the South Dakota Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED).

“This has been a top priority for some time,” said ACDC President Randy Jencks. “We are eager to see it to fruition because it will put Arlington in a great position to attract growth.”

Certified Ready appeal

Certified Ready Sites is an economic development tool which promotes commercial and industrial sites that are development ready. These sites have all the planning, zoning, environmental studies and infrastructure engineering completed so they are essentially shovel-ready.

“All other factors being equal, site selection firms and companies looking to expand may look more favorably towards sites deemed certified or shovel ready because they come with guarantees and expedite development,” said Heartland Director of Economic Development Casey Crabtree. “Having much of the up-front work complete will help Arlington officials position their city ahead of the pack.”

The ACDC has been working to obtain Certified Ready status for the industrial park since 2014. The Certified Ready Sites program is available to all cities, counties and developers in the state. GOED promotes Certified Ready sites on their website to site selectors and expanding businesses across the nation.

“It’s an elaborate application process,” said ACDC Executive Director Jason Uphoff. “We’ve spent a lot of time planning and gathering data. It will all be worth it in the end as we will have a marketable asset–move-in ready sites.”

Lasting benefit to the community

Construction, contracted by Halme, Inc. of Bryant, SD, is expected to begin immediately and will wrap up this fall.

Arlington Mayor Amiel Redfish looks forward to what this will mean for the community.

“There are many advantages for a city the size of Arlington to have an industrial park, particularly one that is certified ready. Any growth within the park will have a positive impact on the community,” he said.

The industrial park is currently home to TopLot Industries, a furrier, and TransCanada Regional Storehouses, a pipeline supply depot. A third business has pledged to relocate in the park, pending development of the infrastructure. Details regarding that expansion will be announced soon.

“Citizens State Bank is committed to the success of our community. We actively encourage and promote all forms of agricultural and business related activities, which includes this important ACDC project,” said Citizens State Bank President Wayne Fischer.”The completion of the infrastructure of the industrial park coupled with the relocation and expansion of a valued member of the Arlington business community will have a very positive impact for years to come.”

 

Arlington seeks competitive edge with shovel-ready sites

The Arlington Community Development Corporation (ACDC) hopes to expand the number of shovel-ready sites in the local industrial park by 250 percent. The first step in the process is developing the Arlington Industrial Park Master Plan, to be completed by Banner Engineering,  which will outline a blueprint for the development of roads, sewer and electrical infrastructure to six new lots on the north side of the industrial park.

“Our development corporation is dedicated to improving the business environment in Arlington,” said ACDC Executive Director Jason Uphoff. “The completion of the industrial park master plan is critical to attracting new businesses to the area.”

Located along US-Hwy 81, the industrial park currently houses TopLot Industries, a furrier, and TransCanada Regional Storehouses, a pipeline supply depot. Uphoff believes additional commercial and light industrial sites will make Arlington more appealing and facilitate economic development in the region.

“In order to  grow, we have to be prepared for it,” said Uphoff. “Expanding our shovel-ready sites will be a vital economic development tool when competing with other communities to attract prospective businesses.”

The term shovel-ready generally refers to commercial and industrial sites that have all the planning, zoning, environmental studies and infrastructure engineering completed prior to sale and occupation. Generally these “ready to go” sites are under the legal control of the city, local development corporation or other third party. Because shovel-ready sites provide businesses with guarantees and expedite development, the communities in which they are located often have a competitive edge in the site selection process.

Heartland recently awarded the ACDC a $5,000 economic development grant to assist with the completion of the master plan. Heartland awards economic development grants to help with projects that foster growth and development or increase the quality of life in the community. Heartland customers and their local economic development corporations are eligible to apply.

“Shovel-ready sites are very attractive to companies looking to move or expand because they mitigate risk,” said Heartland Director of Economic Development Ryan Brown. “The more information and data a prospective business has about a site or location, the faster they can make a decision and begin construction.”

CertifiedReadySitesUpon completion, Uphoff intends to register the industrial park with South Dakota’s Certified Ready Sites (CRS) program. Operated by the South Dakota Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED), CRS is an economic development tool available to all cities, counties and developers in the state which promotes commercial and industrial sites that are development ready. Upon certification, qualifying sites are featured on the GOED website www.sdreadytopartner.com.

[row][third_paragraph]Not a South Dakota customer?[/third_paragraph][paragraph_right] Iowa and Minnesota have similar certified site programs. [/paragraph_right][/row]