Growing together; Neighbors grow with Sioux Falls

KELOLAND.com Original

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — From 2019 to 2020, the Sioux Falls grew by almost 10 people a day or 3,550 people during the year, according to the city’s projections.

More growth is expected. City officials predict that Sioux Falls to grow to 208,000 in 2025.

The city released its annual population projections on Tuesday, which say the city’s population is estimated at 190,750 for 2020 and an increase of about 18,000 people to 208,000 in 2025.

From 2018 to 2019, the city grew by almost 11 people a day, or 4,000 people.

Jeff Eckhoff, the Sioux Falls Director of Planning and Development Services, says the department develops year-end population estimates on an annual basis. A formula that uses the number of households, past population data and past trends is used to make population projections, he said.

The city uses the estimates to help plan for any police, infrastructure and similar needs in the city, Eckhoff said.

The Census Bureau estimated the city’s population at 181,833 in July 2018.

The city has grown by 67,000 people since Jan. 1, 2000.

As Sioux Falls grows, so do neighboring communities

“We feed off that,” Hartford City Administrator Teresa Sidel said of the growth in the Sioux Falls population.

Sidel said Hartford is the fortunate position to be near Sioux Falls and its jobs and amenities at the same time offering its own quality of life for residents.

People may work in Sioux Falls and love what it has to offer but “don’t necessarily want to live in Sioux Falls,” Sidel said. “Hence, they choose Hartford for smaller town living.”

Sidel has been the town’s city administrator since 2009. “I’ve definitely seen the growth.”

Growth in neighboring communities is not only illustrated by new rooftops; sometimes it’s in distance.

When Mike McMahon, the planning and zoning administrator in Harrisburg, started his job seven years ago, the city was 2 1/2 miles from the border with Sioux Falls.

Today, it’s 1 1/2 miles.

“The gap has been slowly closing with our westward expansion,” McMahon said.

Just as the city of Sioux Falls does, the city of Hartford and Harrisburg estimate future populations for planning purposes.

Hartford’s comprehensive plan projected the city’s 2020 population to be 3,089. “We’ve already surpassed that,” Sidel said.

Hartford’s estimated 2020 population is 3,100. More growth is expected.

Based on new housing and about three people per household, McMahon said Harrisburg’s population is probably 6,850 people.

That’s slightly behind the projected population of 6,880, he said.

The city is projecting an annual population growth of 7%, McMahon said.

The estimated population of Harrisburg for 2024 is 9,654 and 10,040 in 2025.

The estimated 2025 population in Hartford is 3,410. It’s 3,765 for 2030 and 4,157 for 2035.

City officials in Sioux Falls overshot its projected 2025 population estimates back in 2005 and 2007.

KELOLAND News archives show that in 2005, the projected 2025 population was 220,000 and in 2007, the projected 2025 population was 225,000. A recession struck the city and entire U.S. in 2008, which likely had an impact on the city’s growth.

In 2018, city officials adjusted the projected 2025 population to 189,000.

Hartford and Harrisburg aren’t the only neighboring community to grow since the 2010 Census.

Tea grew from 3,801 in the 2010 Census to an estimated 5,624 people in 2018, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Brandon grew from 8,899 people in 2010 to an estimated 10,094 in 2018.

Proximity to Sioux Falls has helped Harrisburg grow, McMahon said, but it’s also hampered commercial growth.

“It’s good and bad. It brings us rooftops but so far it hasn’t brought us a lot of commercial development,” McMahon said.

McMahon said the threshold to spark commercial development such as more retailers, restaurants, motels and similar, is a population of 10,000. It’s the population Harrisburg could reach in 2025. The city did gain a Fareway and an Ace Hardware in the past two years.

Hartford’s distance from Sioux Falls, about 15.1 to 18 miles depending on the route, may have been enough to keep people shopping in town for a number of years.

Sidel said the community has a grocery store, medical clinic, pharmacy and other businesses. Such businesses have been sustained or added with the population growth, she said.

Harrisburg hasn’t had a traditional downtown since the 1940s, McMahon said. Shopping patterns had changed before the growth explosion that started in 2000. From 2000 to 2010, the city grew by more than 300%, McMahon said.

Where has the growth been in Sioux Falls?

Jeff Eckhoff, the director of planning and development services for Sioux Falls said the city has had unusual growth when compared to other cities.

“We just tend to grow in every direction,” Eckhoff said. “We understand it’s unusual.”

The city’s 2040 Comprehensive Plan divides potential growth areas into three tiers. Tier I is land for which annexation is advised within five years. Tier II is land for which annexation is not advised but that city services will be projected to be available in six to 15 years. Tier III is land for which annexation is not advised but city services are projected to be available with 16 to 25 years.

Tier areas related to annexation for the city of Sioux Falls. Image is from the city of Sioux Falls website.

Areas in a Tier I map include areas in the northeast, north and west.

Eckhoff said the city works with officials from Lincoln County and Minnehaha County on development through a joint jurisdiction agreement.

In each case, the partners want to do what makes sense, Eckhoff said.

There are several housing developments that have grown outside the Sioux Falls city limits in neighboring townships such as Silver Creek.

“…we try to have annexation driven by the petitioners when they are ready,” Eckhoff said. “Forced annexation, we try not to do that.”

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