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Grade Raise on Highway 81 Started

For Immediate Release: Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Contact:  Craig Smith 605-995-3300 



ARLINGTON, S.D. - The South Dakota Department of Transportation today announced that work to raise the grade on Highway 81 south of Arlington has begun. The highway is closed to traffic due to high lakes levels overtopping the roadway and has been impacted by flooding since March


“Highway 81 is a major roadway in the eastern part of our state, so this closure has a personal impact on both our people and our economy,” said Governor Kristi Noem. “This grade raise will restore access and help folks in this area get back to a normal routine. We will continue partnering with communities as we rebuild and recover from the storms this spring.”


The contractor will be raising the grade an average of two-feet for a length of two miles from 213th Street to south of 215th Street.


The prime contractor on this $4.1 million project is Prairie States Trucking. The estimated completion date to have it reopen to traffic is the end of October.


The work being done on Highway 81 is a temporary solution; long-term plans are being developed to make the grade raise work permanent in the year 2020 or 2021.


Picture attached from the SDDOT 511 camera system and at this link: https://news.sd.gov/mediacontent.aspx?id=24&media=Photo