SIOUX FALLS, SD (KELO)–Work on the Steel District broke ground near Falls Park more than two years ago; now the massive development’s first occupants have moved into the building.

And they just happen to be from the company that spearheaded the project. A look inside Lloyd Companies’ new headquarters inside the new Steel District office tower in tonight’s Eye on KELOLAND.

“This was junkyard and it really wasn’t that many years ago,” Lloyd Companies founder & Chairman of the Board Craig Lloyd said during the August 2021 groundbreaking ceremony.

After breaking ground in 2021, that former junk yard has truly been transformed into one of the city’s largest commercial developments.

“It’s just going to be such a hub for activity, people are going to be able to come down here, park in the parking garage, go get a drink, go get dinner, in the winter go check out the lights, this becomes really one of the places to be in Sioux Falls,” Lloyd Companies Chief Operating Officer Jake Quasney said in a June 2023 update on the project.

That goal is now taking shape inside the still bustling construction zone.

“We’re in various stages of construction throughout the office building where we’re sitting here today,” Quasney said

But last week all 150 Lloyd employees moved from their offices in the CNA building to the new company headquarters inside the Steel District office tower.

“It’s really special, I mean it was fun to get to see the team experience it, to get to watch Craig move into his new office.

This development was a dream Lloyd company founder Craig Lloyd spent nearly a decade working towards.

“You’ve got the parking ramp, apartments, 100 apartments, 20 condos, 195,000 square feet of office, 216 spaces for a hotel, a 10,000 square foot convention center. No one I know of has put all of that together in one project,” Lloyd said during the 2021 groundbreaking.

While the rest of those features are still underway, Lloyd employees are excited to be the first people to take advantage of the incredible views from the nine-story building.

“To be able to sit here in my office, look out over the falls, look out and just appreciate everything that has gone into 50 years of building this company and 50 years of contributing to the community,” Quasney said.

It’s a view Lloyd made sure all of his employees could see when he designed the building.

“We wanted to make sure everybody had good light, we have the interior offices with glass, the cubicle space, more open office area out on the windows, so much brighter here than our last office,” Quasney said.

Lloyd’s employees are the first to test out the new building while work finishes up on the common area and the other tenant’s spaces.

“We’ve got a number of different tenants coming in, that will happen over time here, the next one in October, another one moving in late November, early December, next spring and summer the 85 percent of the building that is leased will be full,” Quasney said.

While the office tower has plenty of tenants moving in, the rest of the development is still a few months from opening up to the public.

“The experience from the general public’s perspective, there’s a parking garage and you can walk through an office hallway,” Quasney said.

That 900-plus spot parking garage will eventually serve the entire development.

“The parking garage is going to function just like a city parking garage is, nights and weekends are free, during the day, that is paid parking. Pull in, grab your ticket, grab your ticket and take it with you, pay stations are at the exit. People are going to have to learn different ways to manage the parking lot,” Quasney said. 

While the parking ramp is one of the learning curves of the new development…

“We’re using ourselves as guinea pigs, I just signed up for another package of signs to come,” Quasney said.

…it’s also a sign of significant growth, bringing the community of Sioux Falls more of the access and amenities they’re used to finding in larger cities.

“Its going to take a bit of learning curve for Sioux Falls, that’s the sort of thing when advancing a community,” Quasney said. “We have to continue to push the envelope and create those opportunities.”

The three restaurants on the ground floor of the office building will open next spring. The Canopy hotel and restaurant will open a year from now.