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City council to consider spending $15 million on Sheridan Lake Road project
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City council to consider spending $15 million on Sheridan Lake Road project

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Sheridan Lake Road will see more reconstruction in the next four years if the Rapid City Council approves a $15.1 million project.

The Public Works Committee sent the item to the council’s Monday night agenda with an approval recommendation.

Public Works Director Dale Tech said the reconstruction from Corral Drive to Catron Boulevard would include lane expansion and turn lanes, underground utilities, curb, gutter and sidewalks.

“This is driven by roadway capacity,” Tech said. “There’s too many vehicles trying to use the road, not enough lanes, not enough movement for those vehicles.”

According to the request to the council, there were about 4,000 vehicles per day on the road in 1995. In 2019, that grew to 16,000 vehicles.

Tech said the road may have at least two lanes in each direction with turning lanes, which he said are the biggest impact to traffic flow. He said anytime there are lane reconfigurations, it’s a given the traffic signals will be addressed as well.

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“These improvements would be built to accommodate what we hope will be the final build out of whatever developable property there is further out on Sheridan Lake Road,” he said.

He said with the locations of Southwest Middle School and Corral Drive Elementary, there are traffic issues in the morning and afternoons in the just over half-mile section.

“This will be a big benefit to that area and help alleviate some of those traffic concerns,” he said. 

Tech said the request to the council is to seek proposals for engineering services to start the design process. He said it will help with evaluating how much the existing utility infrastructure needs to be modified.

He said underground utilities have an average lifespan of 75-80 years. He said the city has good records of the utilities and the utilities on Sheridan Lake Road in this section are fairly young.

Tech said the reconstruction is not associated with the state Department of Transportation and Pennington County’s Sheridan Lake Road reconstruction, although there is a project coming down the pipeline for Catron Boulevard and Mount Rushmore Road around the same time. He said the city will coordinate the projects.

“I believe we’re going in first,” he said. “We’ll try to get ours done and then they’ll come back with their intersection project up on top of the hill.”

If approved, the city would open bids for the project in 2024.

— Contact Siandhara Bonnet at siandhara.bonnet@rapidcityjournal.com

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