Sanborn County among grant recipients

PIERRE – The South Dakota Transportation Commission awarded 53 Bridge Improvement Grants (BIG) for a total of approximately $9 million at their monthly meeting today (April 27) in Pierre.
The grant funding includes 17 bridge preservation projects totaling $2.681 million, seven bridge replacement/rehabilitation projects totaling $4.705 million and 29 preliminary engineering grants totaling $0.872 million. The balance of the $9 million (above) will be used for Construction Engineering costs.
Preliminary Engineering grant recipients are: Aurora, Beadle, Butte, Clark, Day, Deuel, Hughes, Hutchinson, Jackson, Jerauld, Lawrence, Lyman, Marshall, Miner, Minnehaha, Sanborn, Spink, Turner, Union counties and Watertown.
Preservation grant recipients are: Brookings, Campbell, Codington, Gregory, Perkins, Watertown, Yankton and Ziebach counties.
Bridge Replacement/Rehabilitation grant recipients are: Beadle, Brookings, Brown, Davison, Meade and Union counties.
Grant funds are limited to a maximum of $4 million per entity over a three year period to ensure the funds are shared among as many local governments as possible. The local governments are required to pay a minimum of 20 percent matching funds and have three years to expend the grant.
One hundred and ten applications totaling $20.55 million were received by the South Dakota Department of Transportation (SDDOT). Nine cities submitted 11 applications and 39 counties submitted a total of 99 applications.
The BIG program was created in 2015 by Senate Bill 1. SB 1 set aside $7 million per year from funds generated by license plate fees to be used to repair and replace the aging local government bridges. The SDDOT added an additional $2 million this year, making $9 million available.
These grants are in addition to the $6 million in federal highway funding that SDDOT provides for local bridge projects for each of the years 2017 and 2018.
The grants are divided into three categories: preliminary engineering, preservation and replacement.
•    The preliminary engineering grants included funding for survey, hydraulic analysis and structure sizing. This project work will ensure the grant requests for replacement funds will be more accurate. After this phase is completed, some counties and cities may choose to construct the bridges on their own, without grant funding.
•    Preservation work is done to help extend the life of the structure. Project types include bridge deck overlays, railing repairs, adding riprap for scour protection, repairing backwalls, etc.
•    Bridge replacement projects are more expensive and these projects are ranked using a point system. Structure condition, detour route length, traffic counts, economic development factors, amount of wheel tax and additional financial commitment are aspects used to rank the projects.
For more information regarding the BIG program, contact Doug Kinniburgh at 605-773-4284.

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