Home Builders Association, CVB Executive Director respond to Convention Center recommendations

Local News

The Sioux Falls Convention Center hosts multiple events per year, and brings in visitors and tax revenue to the city. That’s one of the reasons a study group is recommending the venue add more space. KELOLAND News has told you about the group’s suggestion to tear down the Arena to add 60,000 square feet to the Convention Center.

So far, it’s just a recommendation, but the president of an organization that has shows there and the head of the Convention and Visitor’s Bureau are giving their thoughts on what this would mean for Sioux Falls’ future.

When homeowners want to cool off, there’s a hot trend in technology they may install in their houses.

“Energy efficiency. We’re definitely seeing people plan for more energy efficiency,” Dusty Rallis, president of the Home Builder’s Association of the Sioux Empire, said.

It’s one of the things you may see at next year’s Home Builders of the Sioux Empire Show at the Convention Center. Rallis says the event grows every year and 250 vendor booths are starting to spill into the Arena. That’s why he says adding floor space to the Convention Center could help his event.

“It’s definitely going to be important to contain our show in one local area. So we’re not going into a separate building. That wouldn’t work very well for us,” Rallis said.

Convention and Visitor’s Bureau Executive Director Teri Schmidt agrees with the recommendation.

“We need more space,” Teri Schmidt, CVB, said.

With trends changing, and more interest in downtown, we asked Schmidt if it would be wise for the city to add more space to an area outside of the hotspot.

“Downtown is where the action is. I mean, let’s face it. That’s where the action is. There is not action out by the convention center,” Schmidt said.

However, she sees opportunities to add to and fill the convention center, but also develop downtown for conventions and meetings.

“We will continue to work to make people happy by finding ways to get them downtown to get those experiences to them. Is it the ideal? No, but we will do our best to make it happen,” Schmidt said.

These are only preliminary recommendations, so time will tell how and if the city will move forward on shaping the events campus.

“We’ll definitely be interested in seeing what happens. That’s for sure,” Rallis said.

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