Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Avera Looks to Build Sense of Community in New Location

Officials with Avera health hope their new hospital on 69th and Louise in Sioux Falls becomes more than a place for patients to receive care. They’re looking to make it a gathering place for a growing community

The new hospital is set to open next year, and will include operating rooms, addiction care, a meditation room and a restaurant. The $130 million undertaking is the most expensive construction project in the history of Sioux Falls. But for now, steel beams and concrete floors only hint at what’s to come.

Eric Bender is superintendent with Journey Construction. He shares the current stage of the project. 

“We’ve got the structural steel that just wrapped up here this last week on the medical office building. We’re spraying fireproofing on the structure once the composite slabs are place.”

Eight thousand bags of fireproofing material are stacked on slabs more than 5 feet high in what will eventually be the arbor area of the building. Four stories up on the roof, the team plans an open-air patio space where in-patients and families can gather and enjoy the view.

Dick Molseed is Executive VP of Strategy and Governance with Avera. He says the rooftop area and restaurant in the arbor follow a theme of community space that Avera has included in other locations. He uses the Prairie Center on the east side of Sioux Falls as an example.

“We’ve found that people have kind of discovered it. It’s a place where they come for breakfast or coffee or lunch, and they come there and there are groups that play Mahjong and play cards. And they gather there for prayer meetings and lots of other things," says Molseed. "And we’re hoping that Avera on Louise, that that same kind of community sense is brought into this building as well.”

Molseed says the new location towards the south side of town is following the growth trends of Harrisburg and Lincoln County. He also says the close proximity to I-29 will better serve Avera patients—more than half of whom come from 30 miles away or more.

Project Manager Aaron Eich says Avera on Louise will open in November of 2019.