Sixth Street additions affect campus traffic

Jen Jungwirth

Jen Jungwirth

Upcoming construction of sixth Street will require Brookings residents to find alternate routes to their destinations.

The South Dakota Department of Transportation will be reconstruct Sixth Street, from Medary Avenue to 22 Avenue, beginning April 3. The department will be providing a detour along Eighth Street.

Due to the alternate route, traffic will increase along Eighth Street, at the edge of the SDSU campus. John Rittershaus of the DOT said the increase in traffic will be significant; however, people will find alternate routes of their own.

In order to control the increase in traffic, the DOT placed a temporary traffic signal at the intersection of eighth and twelveth.

The use of Eighth Street as a detour has produced both negative and positive reactions from students.

“It really makes no sense,” said junior Scott Binger. “The stop light slows traffic down. It’s impossible to make a left turn onto campus when you have to wait for all the other cars to go through.”

However, junior Wendy Beardemphl felt the signal would be beneficial.

“The traffic signal will allow more cars to pass than the original four-way stop did. It will be easier. I don’t understand why we didn’t have one in the first place,” said Beardemphl.

Both Binger and Beardemphl commute to campus daily along Eighth Street.

A second traffic signal will be placed on Eighth and Medary once the construction is underway. The signal now located at Eighth and Twelveth will be in place approximately until May 6.

The construction includes resurfacing, lane widening and new storm drain placement. The overall cost of the project is approximately $5.4 million.

Rittershaus said the construction is scheduled to be completed by November 3.