Six new developments highlight Hartford's growing population

HARTFORD, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - The City of Hartford currently has six subdivision developments planned out.

Which means, in those six areas’ is the opportunity for around 600 lots or more to build in.

Rickie Kunzweiler opened Backdoor Garden in downtown Hartford in 2019 and says it’s the small-town feel that brought her business to Hartford.

Kunzweiler said, “To know your neighbors and your customers, and knowing that we have a great school system here, we have self-sufficient businesses here.”

City officials say they expect the new developments to host around 18-hundred people, but don’t want the city to grow too much.

Hartford Economic Development Director, Jesse Fonkert said, “The city keeps on planning for the future. We want to have a nice steady growth that we can absorb well into our school district, so we don’t want to expand past a 5% growth rate that could really tax our services and our community as well as our school.”

According to city and school officials, since 2010 West Central High School has grown by about 100 students and the Hartford population is up 800 people.

A large contributor to that growth is how close Hartford is to Sioux Falls.
“A lot of folks work in Sioux Falls,” Fonkert added. “According to a housing study, 1,200 people commute out of Hartford every single day, so if we can find ways to bring them closer to our town but also close to Sioux Falls, we are going to be very successful.”

Despite being close to a big city, the people of Hartford shop local and that’s why Kunzweiler brought her business there.

“And the greatest thing about Hartford is their people. To be able to visit with people every day and enjoy their stories and help them make stories is why I’m downtown,” said Kunzweiler.