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Mayor: Interest In Naming New Events Center

December 12, 2011, 10:12 PM by Kelly Bartnick

Mayor: Interest In Naming New Events Center
SIOUX FALLS, SD - Sioux Falls Mayor Mike Huether laid out his events center construction project Monday night before the City Council.

It will take an army of city officers and third-party contractors to make the $115 Million dollar facility happen. The city has already committed to contracts worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. But while combing through the construction contracts, city officials are also working on fulfilling an events center campaign promise. 

It remained one of the biggest questions of the events center debate. Just how much interest would the private sector have in the facility, when none stepped up before the vote?

"You hope that the demand is there to back up the analysis that was done. And so the good news we have right now and the feeling we have now is the demand is there for all aspects of the building and now it's time to get to work," Sioux Falls Community Development Director Darrin Smith said.

That's just part of the work behind the scenes now that the building is a done deal. Smith's office has been fielding calls from businesses curious about sponsorship.

"The naming rights on the outside of the building, premium sponsorships, suite and lodge boxes; and I will let you know, there's demand for all them, there is," Mayor Mike Huether told the council Monday night. 

"We're hiring a firm first to help us identify the firm that will eventually manage the complex as well as put together the contract," Huether said.

"The operator that we use as a city to manage the city will be very involved, so that will be a key point in the process is getting them selected and on board," said Smith.

Proposals for a firm to study management are due Friday and the city hopes to name the management company by next spring. It's just one part of the puzzle the city hopes will yield profitable partnerships.

"We see this potentially being named as a complex. All three facilities there's greater value in that," said Smith.

City officials say no one has committed, and it won't say yet what local and regional businesses have expressed interest in naming rights. Other preliminary construction plans include soil sampling at the construction site and some sanitary sewer system upgrades near the site.

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