Sioux Falls mayor unveils $30 million more for city roads, cuts to parks projects

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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken announced his Capital Program on Friday. 80 percent of the available tax dollars will be dedicated to highway and street projects. The mayor’s office said this is the highest percentage in at least 10 years.

To put it into dollars, an additional $30 million will go to repair and reconstruct roads than previously budgeted. The mayor said it is time to catch up on much-needed repairs.

By the numbers

To put into perspective, $1 million could be put toward one of the projects:

  • 10 blocks of asphalt full reconstruction with base stabilization on streets rated “very poor.”
  • 28.5 blocks of thick overlay or full-depth replacement on poorly rated roads
  • 50 blocks of thin overlay for good pavement conditions
  • 333 blocks of residential streets rated very good, but in need of a new surface

“Our roads and infrastructure are critical to quality of life and resident satisfaction,” TenHaken said in a statement. “I’m committed to improving our roadways during the years ahead, and I hope to earn the support of the City Council on this proposal to invest more dollars into our infrastructure.”

Possible projects in 2020

  • Rehabilitation of 57th Street from Minnesota Ave. to Western Ave.
  • Expansion and signals at the intersection of Minnesota Ave. and Ralph Rogers Rd.
  • Reconstruction and expansion of Marion Rd. north of Madison St. ahead of Jefferson High School
  • Reconstruction of Minnesota Ave. from Russell St. to 18th St.
  • Reconstruction of 41st St. from Marion Rd. to Minnesota Ave.
  • Reconstruction of Rice St. from Cliff Ave. to Cleveland Ave.
  • Arterial street expansion of 85th St. from Hughes to Tallgrass Ave.
  • Arterial intersection improvements to 41st St. and Shirley Ave.
  • Arterial intersection improvements to 41st St. and Minnesota Ave.
  • Downtown reconstruction of Fourth St. from Minnesota Ave. to Main Ave.
  • Downtown reconstruction of Dakota Ave. road diet
  • Downtown reconstruction of Main Ave. road diet

Outside of roads, some other projects will go toward the water reclamation system and plant expansion and storm drainage projects.

Parks projects get cut down

While TenHaken focuses on roads and infrastructure, parks are getting some of the cuts.

“In future years as the economy grows and we catch up on road construction needs, we can restore some or all of these dollars to the Parks and Recreation section of the CIP,” TenHaken said in his letter to the city council.

The mayor also said in his proposal he will dedicate $877,000 of the $1.6 million to Great Bear for a new ski lift and is encouraging private donations for the rest.

TenHaken will not be putting any money toward new exhibits at the Great Plains Zoo.

“As exciting as it is for the zoo to add new exhibits, my administration will focus on maintaining existing exhibits and maximizing previous investments,” TenHaken said in his letter to the city council.

He will present his plan to the city council on August 5.