Published November 13 2013
Forum editorial: Look west to where action isWhile the brightest spotlight has shown on downtown Fargo the past few years, the most go-go district for rapid new development is centered where Fargo and West Fargo come together at Veterans Boulevard south of Interstate 94. Investment in that area is in the hundreds of millions of dollars and growing every day. A few years ago, it was farm fields and rural roads. Today it’s the fastest-growing suburban tract in the metro, spurred in large part by much of the land having been removed from the floodplain of the Sheyenne River by the Sheyenne Diversion.
The area is roughly bounded by I-94 on the north, 52nd Avenue on the south, 45th Street South on the east and Sheyenne Street (County 17) on the west. Veterans Boulevard bisects the area, with Fargo on the east side, West Fargo on the west side. Both sides are experiencing astounding investments in everything from new schools and parks to branch banks, retail outlets and residential neighborhoods that feature everything from high-end riverside homes to apartment buildings, retirement villages and mid-range single homes and twinhomes.
The latest development news (Forum, Wednesday) from the area is pegged to the new multimillion-dollar Sanford Medical Center, which is under construction on the southeast quadrant bordered by I-94 and Veterans Boulevard. It was announced this week that a large hotel and convention center will be built not far from the medical complex. Just across the highway to the northwest, another hotel/convention center is under construction, and a restaurant is planned on that site. Other hotels and motels in the medical center neighborhood are in the planning stages. No doubt more restaurants will follow, and it is likely additional convenience/gas station-type stores are in the works. Much more is to come, for sure.
So, while the focus on Fargo’s enlivened and changing downtown is appropriate, a look to the west will astonish anyone who’s not been out that way for a while. It’s where the metro’s growth is happening at a frenetic pace – where two vibrant cities come together. Nothing comes close.
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Forum editorials represent the opinion of Forum management and the newspaper’s Editorial Board.