For a visual of Wildwood Drive, take a drive via YouTube.
Wildwood Drive is a small subdivision in west Rapid City that has received a lot of notice in the media due to a South Dakota Supreme Court case as well as several name changes to a small section line road. Most residents of Wildwood want a residential, rural setting while some landowners and developers wish to open the area for commercial development. The information below will provide insight into the changes over the years as well as on-going development.
The Wildwood subdivision land was purchased in 1977-1978 and was later developed by Gunderson's, Inc (Wally Gunderson, Wynn Gunderson, and Don Carlson). The Wildwood Association was established in March of 1980.
April 28, 2003 the Rapid City Journal states,
"In 2000, the city agreed to acquire a stretch of public right-of-way across one corner of the Wildwood Subdivision if landowner Leo Hamm would allow his 60 acres to be annexed into the city.
However, the Wildwood Homeowner Association covenant bars such a right-of-way sale.
Wildwood homeowners are challenging the legality of putting in anything more than a private driveway from Wildwood Drive to Hamm's land, even along the adjoining section line that the city insists has always been a part of the right-of-way.
Vacating a section line can only occur with official government action taking place within city limits, according to City Attorney Adam Altman. The city claims the section line was not vacated.
The Wildwood Association claims the section line was vacated by the city's approval of the Wildwood subdivision plat in 1978-79, well before Wildwood was annexed into the city.
A second part of the case involves the city's ability to condemn the land for the connector road. Rapid City must show that the taking is both necessary and for a public purpose. The city argued that requirement was met in previous hearings, Altman said."
WILDWOOD ASSOCIATION v. HARLEY TAYLOR INC LLC LLC, the South Dakota Supreme Court's decision on August 6, 2003.
WILDWOOD ASSOCIATION, a South Dakota not for profit corporation; John G. Spangler; John M. Weiss; Timothy L. Skinner and Donna L. Skinner; James A. Oswald and Helen I. Oswald; Daniel J. Finn, JR. and Melinda Finn, Plaintiffs and Appellees, v. HARLEY F. TAYLOR, INC., a South Dakota corporation and Red Rock Development Company, LLC, a South Dakota Limited Corporation, Defendants and Appellants, Leo Hamm Family Ranch, LLC, a South Dakota Limited Liability Company; Pennie Lou Slovek, Kellie Sue Weisgram and Shellie Lynn Parker, Defendants and Appellants, The City of Rapid City, a Municipal Corporation, Defendant and Appellant.
Nos. 22538, 22539, 22540.
Argued April 29, 2003. -- August 06, 2003
On August 13, 2003 the Rapid City Journal reported,
"The South Dakota Supreme Court has upheld most but not all of a circuit court's ruling in the contentious battle over the city of Rapid City's decision to open up a public right of way through the southeast corner of the Wildwood Subdivision."
During the February 8, 2012 article from the Rapid City Journal,
"Residents of the quiet Wildwood Drive neighborhood have flooded the Rapid City Planning Commission with letters opposing plans to rezone a rental home property as a commercial office.
The neighbors fear the request is a foot in the door for future business uses that will devalue their homes."
Rezoning denied in February 10, 2012. The Rapid City Journal reported,
"Responding to dozens of concerned residents, the Rapid City Planning Commission on Thursday rejected a request to convert a residential property at the corner of Sheridan Lake Road and Wildwood Drive into a commercial office.
Commissioners voted 7-2 to deny the required rezoning from low-density residential to office commercial for the property at 5504 Wildwood Drive."
From the December 3, 2012 City Council Meeting Minutes: The Wildwood subdivision was mentioned several times. First during the section of Non-Public Hearing Items (allowing the opportunity for people to voice opinions) and again talking about a Resolution for a Road Name Change from Poppy Trail to Shooting Star Trail.
A rose by any other name . . . the changing names of the section line
-Rolling Thunder Trail (2000-2001)
-Shooting Star Trail (current)
Visit the City of Rapid City website to view more public meeting information: city council minutes, planning decisions, and more for the Wildwood drive and/or subdivision.
Follow Wildwood issues in the archive.