JUNE 4, 2018 - VOL. 54 No. 8

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Infrastructure development underway at USD Discovery District

The USD Discovery District, an 80-acre contemporary corporate and academic research park under development in Sioux Falls, has awarded the contract for its initial infrastructure construction.

A bid of $1.214 million from Runge Enterprises, Inc. of Sioux Falls was selected. The project includes 2,800 feet, of the anticipated 11,000 feet, of roads, water and sewer that will allow for the first buildings on the site. Construction is expected to begin in April.

"This is an exciting initial milestone for the USD Discovery District," said Rich Naser, Jr., President of the USD Discovery District. "It marks the start of physical construction-the result of years of planning-and the first step in creating an open and urban innovation environment in which to live, work and play."

The roads being constructed, West Nobel Street and North Frances Avenue will provide the foundation of the urban landscape creating the "main" street and intersection for the entrance for the District. In addition, these streets open access to eight building sites. The Discovery District intends to lease one of those sites within the development for construction of a multi-story hotel. Creating accommodations and amenities for visitors will complement the planned urban environment and enhance the District's ability to support its research, education and business tenants.

"With the continued growth of northwest Sioux Falls - there's a real opportunity here," said Naser. "It's a great location with quick access to Interstate 29, the airport and a direct route to downtown; right on the edge of the city. We want to build on that momentum and keep it going."

The planned innovation community, adjacent to University Center in northwest Sioux Falls, will provide access to research facilities and infrastructure for research business development, which will create new jobs and foster collaboration for the commercialization of new technologies. When fully developed, it will include an estimated 26 privately-developed buildings with facility construction value exceeding $314M and nearly 2,800 people employed by companies located in the District.

The USD Discovery District is a public-private partnership effort between the University of South Dakota, the Governor's Office of Economic Development, the City of Sioux Falls, the Board of Regents and the business community through Forward Sioux Falls.

Infrastructure development is being funded in part by a $755,000 matching grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA). Forward Sioux Falls and the University of South Dakota are providing local funds for the match through a 2014 general fund appropriation.

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