Major road changes proposed from Mount Rushmore Road to Keystone Wye

RAPID CITY, S.D. — The State Department of Transportation is proposing changes to Mount Rushmore Road. The changes will stretch 18-miles from Rapid City to Keystone.

The DOT is currently seeking suggestions from the community on the proposal.

The planned reconstruction would begin at the intersection of Mount Rushmore Road and Cathedral Drive. After conducting several studies officials believe a continuous flow intersection would work best for the area. The intersection would consist of more lanes and be a lot wider than what the current roadway has today.

Officials say with business booming along the area, traffic is becoming an issue and the number of vehicles using the road is expected to double within the next few years.

The proposed changes are designed to make traffic flow more efficient and less hazardous. Officials say the changes are also needed in order to keep the road up to code.

“That involves everything from traffic signals, intersections, what safety aspects we need to do. There has been a discussion about aesthetics,” said Tom Horan, the regional operations engineer with the DOT.

A few community members are concerned about the Mount Rushmore Road expansion. They feel as if it will take away from the beauty of the area.

As of now, the DOT is only taking suggestions so it can devise a plan with the communities’ needs and desires in mind.

“When it comes to safety standards those will always trump everything and there are many different ways that we can construct highways but there are national standards that have to be followed when it comes to designing highways,” said Horan.

The DOT will host two more public meetings within the next year and a final plan will be submitted to Rapid City leaders by the end of 2020.

Categories: Local News, South Dakota News