Dance Gallery plans to leave downtown, build new studio

March 5, 2019

Dance Gallery is working on a plan to replace its downtown dance studio with a new building in south-central Sioux Falls.

“After 20 years of being downtown, we have decided to move. … The parking has just become an insurmountable problem,” said Arthur Kriens, whose wife, Jackie Pederson-Kriens, owns the dance studio.

On Wednesday, the Sioux Falls Planning Commission will consider a rezoning request for land the couple plans to buy on Hawthorne Avenue at 47th Street and a conditional use permit for additional parking across the road.

It’s a convenient location because of easy access from the nearby Western Avenue exit for Interstate 229, said Kriens, who serves as business manager for the dance studio.

“Parents can drop the kids off, and there’s lots of shopping and restaurants and grocery stores nearby.”

The new building, which likely wouldn’t open until fall 2020, would be on one level and have room for seven classrooms, dressing rooms, an expanded waiting area for parents and better restrooms, he said

“It will be a really great thing. It has been an exciting process but difficult. … We’ve been through a number of options that haven’t worked out.”

The couple started Dance Gallery in 1999 with one classroom on the second floor of the building at 218 S. Main Ave. and has been able to expand over the years to seven classrooms. The dance studio has 500 students ranging in age from 3 to adults. It offers classes in ballet, tap, jazz, contemporary and hip hop, with a season that runs from September through May. Students perform in five shows each year and dance in “The Nutcracker” every two years.

The couple has been trying to find a new location for the past year because they’re losing customers over the parking issue, Kriens said. The building on Main between 10th and 11th streets dates back to the early 20th century and doesn’t have a parking lot.

“While it’s a really neat, old building and we’re going to miss it, there are heating and cooling issues,” drawbacks with accessibility for those with disabilities and potential safety issues related to some of the people who are drawn downtown, Kriens said.

“But parking is the biggest thing.”

Dance Gallery plans to leave downtown, build new studio

Dance Gallery is working on a plan to replace its downtown dance studio with a new building in south-central Sioux Falls.

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