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What's Next For Events Center

April 26, 2011, 5:00 PM by Don Jorgensen

What's Next For Events Center
SIOUX FALLS, SD - A site for a new Events Center in Sioux Falls has been identified, but it's far from a done deal.

A consulting firm hired by the city recommends building a new 12,000 seat facility near the Arena and Convention Center. That recommendation is based on a two-month study comparing the Arena site and a downtown location.

But city council members say there are still a lot of unanswered questions.

The next step will be for the mayor to make his final recommendation to the city council of where he thinks it should be located.

Plus, the city council will vote on whether to spend $65,000 to study naming rights. It's just one of the mayor's recommended funding sources to pay for a $100 million facility.

The two others are using tax dollars for a down payment and borrow the rest. But right now those numbers are unclear. 

"That has been the question haunting this ever since we started this discussion," city council member Greg Jamison said. 

Jamison says his biggest question is how much will taxpayers have to chip in and what other projects the city will have to sacrifice in order to pay for it.

Newly elected city council member Dean Karsky says there will be lots of discussions in the coming weeks, especially when it comes to paying for it. Right now, he's waiting to see what the final numbers will be before he casts his vote.

"I don't see any others that we can use other than somebody writing us a check saying, 'Here, build us an Events Center.'  It's a nice dream, but I don't see it happening," Karsky said.

Jamison says he too is anxious to see the final numbers. 

"It's going to happen fast because in order to get it on the ballot in November, there's a lot of things that have to happen so there's a rush to get all those questions answered to get it on the ballot," Jamison said.

"At least we have a process.  We have something to work with.  We can either move forward or we can put it to rest and if we put it to rest, it's going to be put to bed for a long, long time," Karsky said.

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