Rapid City, SDDOT remaining diligent in wait for Biden Infrastructure Bill

States and cities nationwide could receive as much as $550 billion, including $110 billion for roads and bridges, $66 billion for the nation's railroads, and $65 billion for broadband.

RAPID CITY, S.D. — Rapid City leaders may face tough decisions if President Biden’s Infrastructure Package becomes law.

States and cities nationwide could receive as much as $550 billion, including $110 billion for roads and bridges, $66 billion for the nation’s railroads, and $65 billion for broadband.

While they may not be planning yet, Rapid City officials say they’ll wait on guidance on how those funds can be spent.

“We know that there’s a potential that the state’s going to get added funds through the infrastructure (bill) assuming house passage, but again in what areas?,” said Darrell Shoemaker, the Communications Coordinator with the City of Rapid City. “Again, everything is sort of in a broad brush sort of perspective right now.”

The city has a number of projects, most namely the water, sewer and storm water upgrades along West Main and St. Joseph Street.

But Shoemaker says that the city won’t look too far ahead.

“(There’s) a lot decisions that we will need to make,” Shoemaker said. “(We) don’t even wanna kinda get in a huddle sort of situation and plan when the money might not be in those particular areas.”

The South Dakota Department of Transportation is also watching the situation closely.

As the SDDOT navigates its current projects, it’s also eyeing its list of future potential improvements, like along U.S. Highway 16 and Catron Boulevard that could be impacted by the funds.

“As we progress every year, we re-prioritize that list, and see what comes back into the system and what leaves and there’s a lot of areas that we want to look at to improve there’s, you know, sections of hills roads that we want to look at, there’s interstate stuff that we need to look at here in the near future,” said Mike Carlson, an Engineer for the Rapid City area with the South Dakota Department of Transportation.

State and city officials are waiting on funds and guidance that could boost their resources.

Categories: Local News, South Dakota News