A lack of Statesbuds



The Empire Place layout that will house upcoming businesses, Chipotle and Chick-Fil-A.

Taylor Schmitz, Staff Writer

It was announced in late 2019 and early 2020 that the city of Sioux Falls would see many businesses pop up in the foreseeable future. However, COVID-19 delays mixed with little communication about the various companies’ developments have made the perfect recipe for anxious inhabitants of the city. Many are wondering when, or if, they will get to shop at their favorite retail stores, dine at their favorite restaurants and spend time with family and friends at their favorite entertainment venues right here in town.

Among the most anticipated places that were set to open this year was restaurant and entertainment giant, Dave and Busters, which was expected to open at Lake Lorraine last summer. In April 2020, it was announced that the corporation halted its construction in Sioux Falls and took necessary measures to temporarily close all 137 of their locations to ensure the safety of its team members. The building originally planned to open in August and is sadly still a waiting game for expectant residents seeking word on a new opening date. 

Unfortunately, plans for everyone’s favorite fast-food restaurant, Chick-Fil-A are just as foggy. It has been rumored for years that the chain would arrive in Sioux Falls and finally in March 2020 it seemed as if the infamous chicken sandwiches and chicken nuggets were, at last, in reach of adoring Sioux Falls customers. However, like most of the businesses set to open this year, construction was delayed due to COVID-19 concerns. The only known information now is that Chick-Fil-A, after originally planning to start building its store last summer at Empire Place, will not open until at the earliest, 2021.

However, it is not all bad news for starving consumers. The new Chipotle Mexican Grill that was first confirmed to come to Sioux Falls back in October 2019 has given everyone more clarity and hope for the city’s growing economy. In July 2020, the Chipotle leadership team said they were planning to postpone the enterprise’s planned opening date from this fall to early 2021. Although still under construction, the fast-casual Mexican restaurant can be seen standing on the future site of Empire place and may even open before year’s end.

It is safe to assume that no one expected 2020 to go like it has, and it is no different with the companies that were supposed to debut this year but have now been wistfully delayed. No matter how long it takes for these popular businesses to finally open their doors to the public, we can count on one thing: there will always be a growing market in Sioux Falls for new stores and restaurants.