Western South Dakota's Only Ranch Station

Sturgis Council hears 2022 bridge inspection report; chooses option in replacing one

STURGIS, S.D. – The city’s bridges were on the agenda for the Sturgis City Council at their first meeting in December Monday.

Up first, the council received the 2022 Bridge Inspection Report.

The inspection was done by Brosz Engineering, who provideed a report on the condition of the city’s eight structures that meet the National Bridge Inspection Standards program eligibility requirements.

The NBIS program requires all structures over 20 feet in length be inspected every two years, and every four years for eligible reinforced concrete box culverts.

Doug Russell with Brosz says the eight bridges are in relatively good shape.


Of the eight bridges, just one was in need of enough repairs that the city could apply for some grant money from the state to help with the cost. That bridge is on the Whitewood Service Road over Bear Butte Creek. Among the repairs are to remove spalled concrete, install expansion material, re-grout some exposed reinforcing steel and replacing riprap.

The council last night also took action on eliminating the preexisting bridge crossings over Bear Butte Creek at city park.

That’s due to the Federal Emergency Management Agency identifying the two crossings on Blanche and Sly Streets as being noncompliant.

Sturgis City Manager Daniel Ainslie says the crossings were not properly permitted by FEMA when originally constructed. In order to become compliant, the city will need to provide FEMA with a corrective plan of action or the city could be considered ineligible for FEMA’s flood insurance program.

The council approved exploring an option that would replace the two bridges with a FEMA-approved low water crossing on Blanche Street – such as what it going in on 7th Street. In turn, the Sly Road crossing would be closed and a new road from the intersection of Woodland to Junction to city park would be built.

The project is expected to cost an estimated $1.1 to $1.2 million dollars. Because the project is not budgeted, it will require a supplemental appropriation from the General Fund, which will greatly reduce the fund’s rainy day reserves.

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