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Sioux Falls homeowner raises new concerns about road project

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Published: Jan. 31, 2022 at 5:46 PM CST
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - In October, Dakota News Now ran a story about a group of concerned Sioux Falls residents, weary of the city’s plans to open an unpaved road- East Grant Street, just north of Arrowhead Parkway.

Residents told Dakota News Now they wanted that road to be paved to ensure the safety of those who use the road, because of business traffic in the area. The city recently covered a gap in the road with crushed asphalt, but that decision is also drawing pushback.

Chester DeYoung, who lives on the road, says the city continues to push forward with the project despite his concerns.

“Basically, I feel like I’ve been bullied,” “DeYoung said. “It’s like they don’t even want to hear you.”

The city used asphalt milling as a base for the road, which will eventually serve as an emergency route. However, with commercial property, volleyball courts, and an apartment complex going up next to his property, DeYoung says this makeshift street won’t suffice.

“As soon as they open that road, this neighborhood is going to wind up with a whole lot of traffic all summer long when everyone’s out enjoying the weather,” DeYoung said.

In addition to the recent work, the city will widen the existing gravel road to 16 feet. And, give a full inspection before opening it to the public.

While DeYoung was aware a project like this may be coming, his main concern lies with how the city has handled the process, claiming they aren’t doing things by the book.

“They’ve dug themselves a deep hole and they just can’t figure out how to get out, and they’re hoping that the neighborhood and myself will just roll over and let them go,” DeYoung said.

DeYoung says he has contacted a lawyer about the situation, and that legal action could be a real possibility.

“The only thing stopping the road is a court injunction,” DeYoung said. “I would much rather come to come sort of agreement with city hall, but how flexible is city hall going to be? How much of an agreement do they want to come up with?”

Dakota News Now also reached out to Sioux Falls City Engineer Andy Berg about the project. He says it is far from complete and the city plans to finish it this spring. Until then, the street will remain closed and no more work will be done until the ground has thawed.

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