The second phase of the $18.8 million Hwy 115 project in and around Dell Rapids has completed. On Wednesday, November 29th, the Interstate 29 interchange at Exit 98 to Dell Rapids reopened to traffic.
Coinciding with the opening of the interstate interchange, the north bridge on Hwy 115 heading south of Dell Rapids will be closed starting Monday, December 4th, resulting in a detour through Dell Rapids. The detour will be the same detour used when the south bridge on Hwy 115 was being replaced. When driving north into Dell Rapids, motorists will be routed off of Hwy 115 to Centennial Dr., to Garfield Ave., and then to 4th St. back west to Hwy 115. Trucks will be directed off of 4th St. at Orleans Ave. and will need to use 3rd St. to get back to Hwy 115.
“The DOT has reassured me that if they are shutting this bridge down, that the contractor is planning on working as expediently as they can through the winter. They’re not going to show up, tear the bridge down, and take off site for six weeks, a month or even two weeks. They plan on working through the winter. They want to get as much work done when the water level is where it is now so that they can be ready to go in the spring. It’s also their hope it pushes up their re-opening schedule on the bridge as well,” said City Administrator Justin Weiland during the regular meeting of the Dell Rapids City Council on Monday, November 20th.
The final phase of the project is the replacement of the north bridge on Hwy 115 and road replacement north to the four-way stop. The highway from the four-way stop west to the new interstate interchange will also be replaced. According to the South Dakota Department of Transportation, the overall completion date for the project is June 21, 2019.
The first phase of the project, the replacement of the south bridge on Hwy 115 and highway replacement to 248th St., began in April of 2016. That section was completed in a little over a year with the bridge and new road opening May of this year.