I won’t get into the argument about whether we needed an indoor public pool or not in Sioux Falls, that ship has sailed. But I do know the neighbors of Spellerberg opposed the location, mainly due to parking issues with the VA. We all knew at the time that the VA wasn’t going anywhere and was expanding. We also know that the VA has a quit claim deed on Spellerberg, so if they want to expand either buildings or parking, they have the right to do so in Spellerberg park. SAVE Spellerberg warned of these issues before the vote. They fell on deaf ears. Now we have an expanded VA, which needed more parking, so they cancelled their lease with Lifescape and we have an indoor pool with a parking lot next to the VA that sits empty most of the time. Earlier this week, a member of SAVE Spellerberg and a Veteran and Volunteer at the VA sent an email to the City Council, here is a portion of it talking about the parking issues;

Parking is a problem with all city projects going back decades.  The city and NFPs intentionally build where there is insufficient parking expecting residential street parking to be a cost savings option.  City leaders have routinely handed over streets to business for their convenience, making homeowners/taxpayers second class to the business of city hall.

Not only do I personally think Spellerberg Park was a bad location for an indoor pool, the evidence is showing that it was a HORRIBLE location. Destroying a park for larger parking, and not having any space for expansion of the facility.

I truly believe if the pool would not have gone in there, the VA would have been able to expand parking to accommodate their future needs as well as Lifescape. I found it interesting that NO ONE brought up the reason why there is congestion, because all of the facilities next to each other. Maybe this SAVE Spellerberg person is right;

Lifescape’s poor planning the last 30 years has caused them with the help of city leaders to promote the decline of the very neighborhood that has supported them.

Maybe this is one of the reasons they put Midco at Spellerberg, so they could institutionalize the neighborhood. Seems their plan hit a snag Tuesday Night.

By l3wis

4 thoughts on “Has the Midco Aquatic Center caused parking issues around the VA?”
  1. I wouldn’t be surprised if the VA investigates building on 100 acres 20 miles west of Sioux Falls. Land there is cheap, they don’t have zoning issues, it’s more central for vets they serve, it’d be a convenient exit off I-90, and employees could find affordable housing in rural towns. The city of Sioux Falls is conveniently squeezing the VA out. A federal government agency prefers their own district. Ancient buildings at the present VA are obsolete, with asbestos issues, and crumbling. The area was never meant to be a hospital complex. I’d like to see the city buy the complex for 200 million and later discover demolition and asbestos removal will require extreme unjustified expense. It’ll be another railroad yards debacle but with new city leader suckers.

  2. Are you saying building an aquatic center near a growing VA hospital, and growing lifescale might have unattended consequeses…..

  3. So much BS about deeds and parking from the same group that said the pool would create the parking issue. If the federal government didn’t want a pool next to it’s hospital, it wouldn’t be there.

    The VA gave the project it’s approval. THE END.

    A gaggle of bitchaholics.

  4. I think the Feds chose to stay out of it, because at the end of the day they can do whatever they want to. As you know, they told Lifescape to go to hell on parking, and if they wanted that pool they could get it with the snap of their fingers.

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