Here’s a big shout out for Downtown Sioux Falls, bringing Charles Marohn to town on Monday, March 5, 2018. Great Job DTSF!
Why the shout out? Some of us were lucky to hear him in person at the Icon Lounge Events Hall and feel the surge of energy he produced. We hope the video has some of the lasting impact.
For those who do not know of Charles Marohn, he started a grass roots movement to rethink how towns are going to survive into the future, the website is strongtowns.org.
Cameraman Bruce was invited to record the event so the rest of the town could consider the possibilities of structured controlled growth before we step off the boom town cliff we are ready to fall off.
After the presentation, Cameraman Bruce was able to visit with Marohn as he was finishing an interview with a local reporter. The subject of big box event centers was brought up. Marohn’s nutshell view of event centers is almost exactly opposite of the current Sioux Falls administration, why? The investment in big structures never pays off due to repair costs to keep the building up. The outflow of cash from the community to far off places. The ongoing debt load never stops even after the bond payments are done.
He also stated, if the event center is sold to the public as an amenity, fine. It’s a cost to make the community better. If the event center is sold as a money making operation, it will always be a loss for the community. There can never be enough profit to trickle down to the town. So it is better to just claim it is a nice amenity.
In other words, it was back to build the town from the bottom up, the only parts of town able to not drain the community are the core areas. Boom Boom sprawling growth only hurts the growth. We already know how far Sioux Falls itself can grow, the boundaries have been set. What are we going to do to plan for the time when this town will have to start rebuilding from the core to handle more people? How are we going to employ and where with the employees work if we continue to destroy our surrounding farmland with cheap housing developments?