Just when you think Rapid City couldn’t get better civic leaders unveiled the much anticipated “Main Street Square” last night. Located at the site of a former parking lot in the heart of historic downtown Rapid City, the square cost $6 million to build coming from private and public donations. Organizers anticipate the revenues to operate the square will come from events and an additional tax on downtown properties, which a majority of downtown property owners supported.
The square has a real metropolitan feel to it, featuring a bandstand, lawn, fountains, tables, vendor services, walking path, a fire pit, and an ice rink. The square promises to be a popular gathering place for hundreds of annual events for many years to come.
While a large number of Rapid Citians don’t support the square, this isn’t unusual. A lot of folks opposed putting the statues of the Presidents on downtown street corners and building the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center. Both have become huge successes and today are embraced by most as a good thing. I suspect Main Street Square will be viewed in the same manner five years from now.
As one friend I met in the square last night commented, “This makes me proud to live in Rapid City.”
P.S. – For those of you thinking Rapid City is somewhere near the Arctic Circle, think again. Notice that Rick is not wearing a jacket and kids are playing in the fountain behind him at 9pm on Oct 7th.