Oyate News - News For The Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate Community

Sisseton-Wahpeton Housing Authority Projects


Last updated 3/8/2021 at 11:30pm

SWHA Director Eric Shepherd, and Contract Specialist David Spider

Sisseton-Wahpeton Housing Authority Projects

By Crystal Owen, Community Planner

Thursday March 4th was an exciting day as Tom Wilson and I went live with the SWHA Executive Director Eric Shepherd and staff members, David Spider and Simon Keeble as we interviewed several project coordinators working on 4 different renovation and direct build projects within the Housing Authority. The goal was to learn more about current and future plans and get that information out to the public on the SWHA Projects.

First stop was Sisseton Housing at unit 8 with a complete renovation done by Arrow Construction which consists of 3 young men, Daniel, Adam and Lucas who learned their construction trade skills at our very own Sisseton-Wahpeton College. They built a house in two semesters. These young men are passionate about the work that they do. We could fee their excitement and pride as they spoke about changing the future of housing homes with efficient design.

Our 2nd stop was in Agency Village to see how SWHA is creating healthy homes and why this is important for residents for indoor air quality. Grants coordinator Dustin Opsal gave the update on assessments and repairs needed. It also includes education to the tenants. Brandon Adams explained the mold and radon assessments that they are doing for 24 homes currently. The Healthy Homes grant will help to improve the quality of homes on the Lake Traverse Reservation.

Our 3rd stop was the Agency Village Elderly Complex Renovation Project. The scope of this grant is to renovate both Agency Village and Crawfordsville Elderly. SWO Housing Authority was the only Tribe to receive this grant within South Dakota. This is a very special project because it gives our elders a safer, updated apartment to live in as everything will be replaced and updated and will be brought up to code and ADA handicap accessible and compliant. The scope of the grant is to renovate both Agency Village and Crawfordsville Elderly complex's.

Arrow Construction L-R: Lucas Iron Shield, Adam High Eagle, and Owner Daniel Kirk

The 4th stop was to view the Federal Home Loan Bank Grant to complete a project of 62 units at Barker Hill. To improve the quality of life of the SWO People Housing is working with numerous local contractors. Currently SWHA has 20 homes coming in and Roll the Dice Construction has the contract to do the roofs and the siding on the Governor Home Program that came in. There have been delays in construction companies all over the nation who have experienced setbacks because of the COVID-19 Pandemic.

The SWHA is working to improve the lives of Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate. There are projects happening on the Lake Traverse Reservation that we can all look forward to. If you would like to see more of these good works please look on Facebook and see the videos on the page of Tom Wilson.


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