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Published November 22, 2013, 06:00 PM

Medical center fuels Veterans Boulevard boom

WEST FARGO - Veterans Boulevard is a major demarcation line between West Fargo and Fargo. And ever since Sanford Health announced plans for a $494 million medical center now under construction at Veterans Boulevard and Interstate 94 on the Fargo side, the area has been abuzz with development of all kinds.

By: Dave Olson, INFORUM

WEST FARGO - Veterans Boulevard is a major demarcation line between West Fargo and Fargo.

And ever since Sanford Health announced plans for a $494 million medical center now under construction at Veterans Boulevard and Interstate 94 on the Fargo side, the area has been abuzz with development of all kinds.

West Fargo projects

Here are some of the projects on the West Fargo side of Veterans Boulevard.

One landmark that’s hard to miss is the new Costco store up and running at 750 23rd Ave. E.

Just north of Costco and on the other side of I-94, a number of projects are in the works that include a Cambria Suites hotel planned for 825 Beaton Drive and a conference center that will go up at 815 Beaton Drive.

An Element by Westin hotel also is planned for the area, along with a restaurant to be built in connection with the hotel.

Also in that neighborhood, a Blarney Stone restaurant is expected to be completed next year at 1910 9th St. E.

The Costco store and a large area to the south of it are part of a development called The Preserve, which is actually three developments in one with different property owners connected to each.

Attorney Dan Bueide represents Rusty Goose Development, a company owned by sisters who grew up on a farm that now makes up the largest piece of The Preserve.

“We had 300 acres, and we knew we wanted some commercial, some office, some multifamily, some single-family (housing),” Bueide said.

The trick, he said, was to create a concept where all of those things could “live and operate the way they should.” Bueide said tons of planning went into the layout of The Preserve long before any dirt was turned.

Mixed use

The Preserve is now home to West Fargo’s Freedom Elementary School, as well as a branch of BlackRidge Bank that opened last summer at 855 26th Ave. E.

A Gate City Bank branch is expected to open at 837 31st Ave. E. early next year.

Housing is also planned in the area, including an apartment building at 2915 Bluestem Drive that will have more than 300 units.

Bueide said the Rusty Goose Development aspect of The Preserve has sold nearly all of the 215 lots it platted in the area for single-family homes.

The other two developments that make up The Preserve are River’s Bend at The Preserve and Maple Ridge at The Preserve, both housing developments.

River’s Bend will offer large lots for about 240 single-family homes that will largely be upscale properties, according to Steve Stoner, representative for owners of the development.

Additional projects on the West Fargo side of Veterans Boulevard, but to the south of The Preserve, include a large assisted-living facility that will be called the Lighthouse at West Fargo.

A little farther south, near 34th Avenue East, is the site planned for building the Red River Valley Funeral Home.

Fargo projects

In addition to the medical center Sanford Health is building, the Fargo side of Veterans Boulevard will also see a number of hotels going up, including a hotel and conference center TMI Hospitality plans to construct adjacent to the medical center starting in 2015.

A hotel is also planned for 5064 23rd Ave. S. and a My Place hotel is to be built nearby at 2501 55th St. S., said Joe Nigg, a Fargo city planner.

In addition, a strip mall is planned for the area of 56th Street and 26th Avenue South and additional apartment buildings will be going up in the same neighborhood, said Nigg, who described Sanford Health’s project as a game changer that will continue to attract investment and attention to Veterans Boulevard.

Bueide agreed with the assessment.

“There’s no doubt about it. The Sanford project is the engine that created the demand for that area,” Bueide said.

And that demand is creating work for the city of West Fargo’s planning department, but staff there are keeping up, said senior planner Tim Solberg.

“It’s been difficult,” Solberg said. “We’ve had (commission meeting) agendas that have been full all summer and into the fall.”


Readers can reach Forum reporter Dave Olson at (701) 241-5555

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