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SDDOT Seeks Public Input on S.D. Highway 44 Platte-Winner Bridge Environment Assessment (EA) Findings

For Immediate Release:  Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Contact:  Steve Gramm, Planning Squad Leader, 605-773-3281

PIERRE, S.D. - The South Dakota Department of Transportation (SDDOT) and Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) will hold public meeting open houses on Tuesday, June 20, 2023, in Winner and Wednesday, June 21, 2023, in Platte to inform the public and gather public input on the S.D. Highway 44 Platte-Winner Bridge Environmental Assessment (EA) and Section 4(f) Evaluation.

The Winner public meeting will be held at the Holiday Inn Express located at 1360 E. Highway 44 in Winner. The Platte public meeting will be held at the Platte Community Center located at 310 Main St. in Platte. Both meetings are scheduled from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Replacement of the Platte-Winner Bridge requires realignment of portions of the Highway 44 corridor immediately adjacent to the Missouri River. The total realignment represents approximately one mile of new bridge plus an additional one-half mile of new roadway on either side of the river, totaling two miles of realignment. The Snake Creek Recreation Area is located on the east side of the bridge. Due to the realignment, SDDOT has worked cooperatively with South Dakota Game, Fish, and Parks (SDGFP) to mitigate the potential impacts caused by the bridge project to the park.

This EA completes a comprehensive evaluation of impacts in categories including land use, archeological and historic resources, noise, wetlands/streams, floodplains, threatened and endangered species, recreational resources, and regulated materials along the route. Due to the presence of recreational and historic resources, this environmental evaluation includes a Section 4(f) analysis which has resulted in proposed findings.

Throughout each public meeting open house event, project staff will be available with displays to discuss the project and answer questions. Information will be available on the EA and the Section 4(f) process and findings. Additional information will be available about the proposed construction timeline. SDDOT has committed to keeping the existing bridge open to traffic during construction of the proposed bridge.

Notice is further given to individuals with disabilities that this public open house will be held in a physically accessible place. Any individuals requiring a reasonable accommodation should submit a request to the SDDOT’s ADA Coordinator at 605-773-3540 or 1-800-877-1113 (Telecommunications Relay Services for the Deaf) at least two business days prior to the public open house.

All interested persons are invited to view the EA, Section 4(f) documents, and a presentation on the project website, https://sd44bridge.com in advance of the public meeting open houses. Printed copies for onsite viewing of the EA will be available at the public meetings, the Platte City Hall located at 310 S. Main St., the SDDOT Winner Area Office located at 1200 S.D. Highway 44 E. in Winner, the SDDOT Mitchell Region Office located at 1300 Ohlman St. in Mitchell, and the SDDOT Central Office located at 700 E. Broadway Ave. in Pierre. 

Comments on the EA will be accepted through Friday, July 7, 2023. Written comments can be submitted at the public open houses, online at https://sd44bridge.com or by email to steve.gramm@state.sd.us. Verbal comments can also be submitted at the open house or by phone to Steve Gramm (SDDOT) at 605-773-3281, or Tim Thoreen (HR Green) at 651-659-7777.

In developing this project, SDDOT published the S.D. Highway 44 Platte-Winner Bridge Corridor Study in November 2019. That study established a recommended alignment for the new bridge and facilitated further coordination with agency partners including the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), U.S. Coast Guard, and SDGFP to obtain project approvals on issue areas including recreational resources and cultural/historic resources. Design and permitting are underway and construction will occur in phases starting in 2024. The new Highway 44 Bridge over the Missouri River is anticipated to be open to the public in 2027.

For more information, visit https://sd44bridge.com.

About SDDOT:
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