It may seem like Jackson Boulevard is constantly under construction, well the work is not over yet. As phase one nears completion, the South Dakota Department of Transportation gears up for phase two that's set to begin in 2014.
Tuesday night at a public meeting, the details of the $7.8 million dollar construction project were discussed. Phase two includes the section of Jackson Boulevard between Chapel Lane Road and just west of Argyle Street.
In that area, the 50 year old pavement will be removed and crews will repave the road. They'll also install new water, sanitary, and storm sewers. Currently the driving lanes are 11 feet wide, the project will extend each lane to 12 feet wide and five foot wide bike paths will be added to each side of the road as well.
But the biggest concern for people who live in the area is safety.
"Right now we're concerned that the proposals will create more of a safety issue for us. It seems to me we're going to spend a lot of money to come up with alternatives, when just a little bit of finessing could make it just as safe as it always has been," said David Schwietert, longtime resident of Jackson Boulevard.
"I thought we had good representation tonight, a lot of good comments and input. So we'll take them back, consider them and see what we can do to have a successful project," said Mark Leiferman, Chief Roadway Design Engineer.
Leiferman encourages everyone with comments or concerns, to submit them in writing before August 7th.
They can be addressed to:
South Dakota Department of Transportation
700 East Broadway Ave
Pierre, SD 57501
Or in email form: Michael.Jacobson@state.sd.us
The final design of the project is expected to be finalized by the end of the year.