Over the past few years, several major national retailers have closed their doors, leaving big vacancies all over the country. While there are still several empty big box stores in Sioux Falls, experts say they won’t be empty for long.
“Even though you see some of these big box empty months on end, a lot of times there’s a lot of activity happening behind the curtain that not everyone sees,” Van Buskirk Commercial Real Estate Agent Ryan Tysdal said.
Tysdal says that’s exactly what’s happening right now with a big vacancy on the east side of Sioux Falls.
“Right now the East 10th Kmart currently has multiple offers on it and I think you’re going to see that sell in the foreseeable short term,” Tysdal said.
Just down the road, the still vacant east side Shopko now has a new owner.
“Vern Eide motorcars has purchased that building and they plan to be open for business this summer,” Tysdal said. “They are relocating a few of their operations into this building…you’ll see a lot of activity happening at the site this spring and into the early summer.”
The space Vern Eide will be vacating already has some new future tenants in the works.
“Pizza Ranch is going to be expanding in that location, and we’re currently negotiating with a national retailer to take about half of the space Vern Eide is vacating,” Tysdal said.
Tysdal says these big box purchases are all about timing; he said there were some national retailers looking at the west side Kmart when Stan Houston won the bid.
“It was definitely a testament to how Stan Houston moved very quickly to secure that sight when it did come up for sale,” Tysdal said. “At the time I was working with a national retailer looking at redeveloping that sight, it was a bigger national user that was not terribly nibble or quick and Stan Houston snuck in there fair and square and bought it.”
In the world of commercial real estate, where deals can take months or years to go through, Tysdal says filling most of the big box vacancies in Sioux Falls has moved extremely fast.
“It speaks to the strength of the Sioux Falls market, we don’t sit on a lot of vacancies for a long period of time, partly because it’s a very vibrant market and other locations in the market are doing so well,” Tysdal said.
Tysdal says in many other cities, big box stores are being broken up into smaller, alternative retail spaces, but so far, Sioux Falls has been able to attract other large retailers who can fill the big box buildings that often have up to 100,000 square feet of retail space.