Sioux Falls Ministry Center finalizes acquisition of deaf school campus

June 7, 2019

The Sioux Falls Ministry Center has finalized its purchase of the South Dakota School for the Deaf campus in central Sioux Falls and plans to create a one-stop area there for lower-income residents.

“Our dream is a mall of services right here in the center of the city that’s easily accessible from all directions, all places in our community,” board chair Rich Merkouris said in a video post on Facebook.

“We are really excited about opportunity to be here on this campus that has served our community so well, has been a blessing to so many in our community, and we want to keep it a blessing to so many people in our community.”

The purchase includes about 14 acres and buildings on the School for the Deaf campus for $6.9 million.

The Ministry Center also is looking at between $1.5 million to $2 million in renovations for the classrooms, boarding rooms, gymnasium and green space it’s buying from the Board of Regents, Merkouris said. That will include roof repairs to and removing a pool from the old gymnasium, installing sprinkling systems and bathrooms in some of the facilities, and more.

It will create what has been dubbed the Empower Campus and include the eight tenants of the Ministry Center – nonprofits serving needs from medical care to child care and counseling – as well as other nonprofits that could include the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Sioux Empire.

“We believe great things are going to continue to flow from this campus,” Merkouris said. “We’re going to see families helped, tens of thousands of families are going to be helped here through different agencies.”

They’re also continuing to work with organizations that might want to partner in offering services on the property. The plan is to transition onto the campus by late this year or early next. The South Dakota Board of Regents purchased the former TCF Bank building at 4101 W. 38th St. as a new location for the School for the Deaf.

“It’s been a really long process. I could take a long time to say thank you to a lot of people,” Merkouris said. “It’s a big deal today.”

Ministry Center to buy School for the Deaf campus, create ‘mall of services’

Sioux Falls Ministry Center finalizes acquisition of deaf school campus

The Sioux Falls Ministry Center has finalized its purchase of the South Dakota School for the Deaf Campus in central Sioux Falls and plans to create a one-stop area there for lower-income residents.

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