Sixth Street construction rolling to finish

Jen Jungwirth

Jen Jungwirth

South Dakota State University students will be greeted by the ongoing construction of Sixth Street, as the crew enters the final phase of the project.

The project began in April and everything has been on schedule, according to John Ritterhaus of the Department of Transportation and director of the construction crew.

“November 6 is the completion date, but we’re hoping to get done early,” he said.

In order to accommodate traffic, detours have been set up. The current detour runs from 20th Avenue to Eighth Street over to Medary Avenue. Temporary stop signs have been placed along Eighth Street and a stoplight has been set up at the intersection of Eighth and Medary in order to control the increase in traffic.

During the previous school year, the detour caused backups in traffic along campus; however, the DOT hasn’t seen any major problems during the summer.

“Traffic slows down over the summer,” said Ritterhaus. “So, we’ve had no problems with the detour route and traffic.”

He also said the DOT has no plans of placing additional signs or traffic signals once school begins.

Seventeenth Avenue is expected to be reopened by the end of August. Once it is reopened, the stoplight at Eighth and Medary will be removed. A new detour will then be from 22nd Avenue to Third Street and back to 17th Avenue until construction is completed.

Businesses along Sixth Street will still be open during the final phase of construction however, shoppers will have to find alternate routes.

Senior Brittany Duin said the construction didn’t stop her from shopping at her favorite stores.

“It wasn’t a huge inconvenience,” she said. “I just found a back way to get where I wanted to go.”

Businesses such as Dollar Discount and Zestos have made the transition easier for their customers by placing signs along the streets informing them they are open and guiding them along the alternate route.

Once the project is completed, Sixth Street will have been altered from Medary Avenue to 22nd Avenue, with the addition of sewer drains, a water main replacement, concrete resurfacing, new traffic signals and permanent roadway signing.

#1.884433:2106400125.jpg:roadconst01.jpg:Crews worked all summer on the Sixth Street construction project, which is on schedule. Construction is expected to be completed by early November.: