Saturday was one of those almost but not quite days for the Campbell County boys soccer team. Top-ranked and consensus favorite to win the Class 4A state soccer tournament, the Camels fell just …
RAPID CITY, S.D. — Despite some expensive improvements to buildings in Rapid City’s downtown, the historic district is worth less — although officials say they’re confident things will get better.
Two years ago, Rapid City voters approved creating a business improvement district that included a tax on downtown property to raise money for revitalization projects.
The initiative helped encourage renovations to some major buildings, including a downtown Sears building and the Hotel Alex Johnson.
The Rapid City Journal reports the district’s total property value has fallen by more than 5 percent, or almost $10 million, since the district was established. Its total value is more than $180 million.
The decline means there will be less money to pay for future projects, but Dan Senftner, president of a downtown redevelopment nonprofit group called Destination Rapid City, says the difference is less than $5,000.
Main Street Square, a public park developed with revitalization money that hosts concerts, art shows and other events, opened only last October, and its impact on downtown has not been fully realized, Senfter said.
“We’re seeing the benefit, we’re seeing the reward of (the downtown tax),” he said. “We’re seeing what it’s done for the community.”
Senfter said he expects downtown property values to eventually increase by 2 percent to 3 percent annually.
Some of the properties within the district have gone out of business, or were bought by Pennington County to make room for an expansion of the county’s courthouse complex.
Harvey Kistler, Rapid City’s deputy director for equalization, said there has been a general decline in commercial property values citywide.
“For the last two years, we have been re-evaluating quite a few commercial properties, because the market has just slipped,” Kistler said.