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Sarah Mannes Homstad, AIA

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01 about

Prairie Line Architecture ~ 

a familiar face with a new name.


Sarah Mannes Homstad, AIA re-launched her practice under the name Prairie Line Architecture in early 2023. The name Prairie Line references the historic train depot that serves as her headquarters in Yankton, South Dakota. As a solo practitioner, Sarah now has a sharpened focus on doing custom residential design. She is currently developing a library of small-scale house plans that will be available for purchase online. Stay tuned!


Mannes Homstad graduated with honors from Vanderbilt University (B.S. 1992) and Iowa State University (MArch 2001), earning the Dean's award for her thesis on student housing. Today she enjoys collaborating with couples, families, & organizations, and will work with you to create the home or office design that suits you best: from distinctive & spacious to efficient & sustainable. Want to overhaul your existing spaces? She can help with that, too.


Sarah’s goal has always been to provide thorough, personalized services and balanced, cohesive designs. 


“I'm excited about this next chapter in my design career and am looking forward to many more years of helping create beautiful and beloved buildings.”


02 portfolio

Before & After Transformations

from old and outdated to fresh and invigorated


03 process

The Prairie Line process begins with an in-person consultation, usually at our office. Once the architect understands the timeline, budget, and relative complexity of your project, she will present you with a design proposal based on the services your project will require. You'll review the proposal together, make adjustments if necessary, and arrive at a scope of services that will become the basis for a design services agreement.


Pre-design & Programming

During pre-design and programming, you and the architect will create a comprehensive list of the types of spaces and activities your new home or business should accommodate. We'll assign square footages to each space & activity to see if the size of your "dream home" is within your budget. It's much easier to scale back the size of a project at this point before everyone falls in love with a design that exceeds your budget! Proceeding with a project that is borderline affordable usually makes the process unnecessarily stressful for everyone involved. In fact, it can result in a project that never breaks ground, and we don't want that!


Schematic Design

During the schematic design phase, the architect will develop massing models, schematic floor plans, and site alternatives that align with the goals you have for your project. We'll pick them apart, select the best ideas from the different alternatives, and then ultimately develop a plan and exterior design that best meets your needs and wants!

Design Development & Builder Selection

This is when we select a builder, if we haven't already. We want to work with an experienced builder who understands how much time, effort, and expense you've put into developing your plans. Successful projects require communication, collaboration, and compromise. 


Once a builder is selected, the architect will regularly review the design with them as the details are being worked-out so that the construction methods required are within their comfort zone. The architect's goal is to maximize design simplicity when it doesn't compromise overall design impact.


Once a set of plans is completed, we'll ask our builder to complete pricing the project. This can be tricky in today's fast-changing world, and so we'll sit down with the builder to make sure their pricing is both reasonable and flexible. Some homebuilders are not as experienced with building custom homes from a set of architectural drawings, so we'll take some time up-front to explain how this process might be different for them. It should be different in a good way!

Construction Administration

If the architect is hired for Construction Administration services, that means the homeowner has very little responsibility for overseeing the builder's work. It is the architect who makes regular site visits and answers questions about how to proceed when questions arise. The architect consults with the client as-needed to provide the builder with answers. This will be quite different for homeowners who have built homes previously as the builder's primary contact. Instead you'll have a design professional who's worked with you for several weeks acting as your advocate during construction. Since most clients do not have the time or expertise to devote to construction administration, these services can be extremely valuable.


Clients who DO have the time and expertise to answer the builder's questions, oversee the project, and take responsibility for construction decisions will not have these services included in their design agreement. 

Project Completion

Construction is exciting, intense, fun, noisy, costly, exhilarating, and at times, stressful! Having a great team in place -- with members who are all committed to working together -- will result in a project that everyone is proud of in the end!



04 contact

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Tel: (605) 665-1852

800 Douglas Ave., Yankton, South Dakota  57078

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