Western South Dakota's Only Ranch Station

Safety upgrades coming to dangerous railroad crossing in Sturgis

STURGIS, S.D. – In the wake of another train vs vehicle collision, the city of Sturgis says some safety upgrades are coming to the railroad crossing on Ball Park Road.

The intersection has seen several accidents over the years — the latest when a train struck a vehicle last month. The driver involved was not seriously hurt.

Sturgis officials say the DOT, RCP&E Railroad, Meade School District and city agreed to assist with significant safety upgrades at the intersection.

Ballpark Road is one of the primary routes to the Sturgis Elementary School and is the primary route taken by the Sturgis Ambulance and Fire Department when responding to calls.  

Improvements include train activated flashing safety lights, automatic crossing gates, concrete surfacing at the crossing and new sidewalks.

The city has agreed to provide 10-percent of the funds needed for the project. The City’s portion is to be in the form of labor.

The State has agreed to provide 90% of the funding from the Railway-Highway Crossing Program. The estimated total cost of the project is $90,232. 

The project was scheduled to begin in late spring of 2019, however due to the sale of the railroad and the short window of time when the project could take place, the project was rescheduled for the Spring of 2020. 

The project will require a street closure, so it will need to take place after school is out for the summer and before the Motorcycle Rally in August.

It’s not the only project that will keep Sturgis crews busy. Flood damaged roads that will need work include Woodland Drive, 7th Street Crossing and Ellen Street.

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Aiden Hedderman

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