Greenway and Riverfront

"In 1839, French explorers described the Sioux River Falls as an area as beautiful and picturesque as any they had ever seen. Seventeen years later, the river and falls were again points of interest, this time for other reasons. In that year, two Iowa land companies established twin town sites into the river valley. The Indian name for the river was 'Te han kas an data’ meaning thickly wooded river. And, indeed with the falls for power, the wood and stone for building, business interest saw the raw material it needed for development. In this way, the Sioux River played a major role in the historical development of the region in 1856."

And so began the first Big Sioux River Greenway which was adopted on April 28, 1975. Their objectives were parks, trails, flood control, picnicking, archery, nature study, camping, motorized recreation area, horseback riding, winter recreation, water activities, and historic sites. 

The second Big Sioux River Greenway Plan was adopted in April of 1987. 
It had seven goals, and 39 items of concern.  Nineteen have been completed, such as:

  • Property Acquisition for Cherry Rock Park and Riverdale Park
  • Nature / Interpretative trail
  • Trail construction on the dike through Oxbow Park to 41st Street
  • Trail construction from 41st Street to 12th Street
  • Trail construction from 12th Street to Madison Street
  • Trail construction from Madison Street to Russell Street
  • Acquisition of the State owned wetlands south of 49th Street
  • Trail construction from the Burlington Northern RR Bridge to South Oxbow Park
  • Redevelopment of the Pitts’ Salvage Site

But others such as:

  • Trail construction on the north bank of Skunk Creek
  • Establishment of a canoe trail
  • Acquisition of river banks along Brandon Road
  • Dual trails
  • Redevelopment of the Schoeneman and Zip Feed Sites

Are still in the planning stages and have yet to be completed. 

Today, the River Greenway is best known for the bike trail. But do you also consider the parks, public facilities, libraries, fairgrounds, recreation centers, ice arenas, public and private schools, daycares, churches, golf courses and historic markers that are adjacent to the greenway and are an integral part of the River Greenway.

Therefore, determine the vision and goals for the corridor, Forward Sioux Falls and the City of Sioux Falls hired Design Studios West to complete a Master Plan for the Greenway and Riverfront. Below you can download the complete document, or individual sections from it.