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Businesses Impacted By 26th Street Proposals

January 15, 2014, 5:00 PM by Sammi Bjelland

Businesses Impacted By 26th Street Proposals

Dramatic changes are in the works for the east side of Sioux Falls that could affect tens of thousands of drivers' every day.

Crews could raise the intersection at 26th Street and Southeastern Avenue several feet, so drivers would no longer have to wait for trains.

The city and state have been studying this intersection for years, and they've narrowed it down to two plans.

One would raise Southeastern Avenue and shift it slightly to the west. That would allow room for an access road for nearby businesses and would only require the city to buy one piece of property.

The other slightly less expensive option would raise the road in the same spot it is now. That would require the city to buy four pieces of property including two businesses.

Steve Klooster has been cutting hair near the corner of 26th and Southeastern for 23 years.

The owner of Headhunters Salon is not excited to see any change that will affect his business, but he does understand the need.

"I'd say 70 percent of people have to take a left onto 26th Street, so that causes problems on Southeastern for quite a distance," Klooster said. 

Klooster says of the half a dozen options the city started out with, these two are by far the best. But that doesn't mean they're perfect in his eyes.

"I might have to move and start over in a new location, and the other one with the service road, I get to stay. But we're probably looking at a year and half of construction, which is going to cause it to be hard for customers to get in and out of the business," Klooster said. 

One of the two remaining plans would create an access road for his businesses and block the view of the Big Sioux River.

The other would force Klooster, a neighboring business and two residential properties to start shopping for a new location.

"Of course everything is priced at Sioux Falls' boom, so the price is up there. So the unknown, you don't know how much the city is going to be willing to pay for our buyout," Klooster said. 

That's just one of the questions Klooster is planning to ask at Wednesday's meeting.

"They've done a good job keeping us informed, so no complaints there. We just know it's going to happen. We just going to have to deal with it, one way or the other," Klooster said.

Wednesday's meeting goes from 5:30 until 7:30 p.m. at John Harris Elementary School.  Anyone can attend.

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