Former Governor’s family farm targeted for commercial development

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — Developers want to turn the Sioux Falls family farm of a former South Dakota governor into the next bustling commercial district as the city expands eastward.

Ryan Tysdal, the great nephew of former Gov. Joe Foss, now owns the farmland in east Sioux Falls that’s poised to become a major city development. He grew up on the property where Foss, a World War II veteran and Medal of Honor recipient, was known to fly planes over the state’s vast prairie, the Argus Leader reported.

Now a commercial broker for Van Buskirk Companies, Tysdal believes the development is uniquely positioned to become a prime location for grocery stores and big national chains looking to add a location in the city.

The development, named Foss Fields, sits near the addition of the new Interstate 90 and Veterans Parkway interchange.

City and state officials have worked for the last couple of years to extend the parkway closer to the interstate, which, once connected, would open the door to commuters and out-of-town shoppers. The project is scheduled to finish August 2020.

Sioux Falls has also invested tens of millions of dollars to extend sewer lines east, which could also drive growth to the area as developers run out of space in the southern part of the city.

“All of that fuels the east-side growth and that’s where the developers are moving,” Tysdal said. “It will be a hotbed of activity for years to come.”

The Foss Fields development was initially planned as a simple retail corridor along the highway. But now developers including Joel Ingle with C-Lemme said the road and sewer investments expand the land’s potential into “more of a regional commercial business park concept.”

Ingle said roughly 40 acres (17 hectares) of Foss Fields will be set aside for single-family homes. The project has a combined 320 acres (130 hectares) for development, he said.

Tysdal believes the development needs investment from a major retailer to take off.

It’s unknown when the project will break ground, but Tysdal said it’s only a matter of time.

“The next 20 years of growth in Sioux Falls is primarily to the east side of town,” Tysdal said. “It’s important that the retail, the commercial sector keeps up with that.”