Mt. Rushmore Road Reconstruction

Project ManagerDave Buck
OwnerSouth Dakota Department of Transportation
AwardsNational Award (Silver Winner)
US Highway 16, also known as Mt. Rushmore Road within the city limits of Rapid City, is a major arterial route connecting the downtown area within the Black Hills. A three phase project to reconstruct the road that serves as a main passage for many of the 3 million visitors to one of the nation's iconic landmarks, Mt. Rushmore. The existing roadway was a five-lane concrete facility with an asphalt overlay. It currently carries an average daily traffic (ADT) of nearly 25,000 vehicles, but ADT is expected to grow to 50,000 by 2039. The new road now consists of two northbound and two southbound lanes with dedicated turn lanes at each intersection. The road also features decorative; colored and stamped concrete medians; colored and patterned retaining walls; colored and stamped sidewalks; and colored ADA ramps at each intersection. Phase 1 of the project began with the reconstruction of half a major intersection and one block of Mt. Rushmore Road. This phase had a 30 day working window, but was completed in 25 working days, which earned five days of incentive pay. The remainder of the project was separated into the following phases; phase 2A (southbound lanes, south half), phase 2B (southbound lanes, north half), phase 3A (northbound lanes, south half), phase 3B (northbound lanes, north half) and phase 4 (center medians). Phase 2A through 3B had a 250 working day requirement with phase 4 and overall project completion date of May 18, 2018. One factor in the success of the project was a series of meetings and ongoing communications among the contractor, the SD DOT, Rapid City officials, subcontractors and utility companies. A dedicated website kept the traveling public and stakeholders updated on all three phases of the corridor reconstruction. Several business and property owners, known as the "Mt. Rushmore Road Group", met occasionally to exchange ideas with public officials and industry personnel. The Mt. Rushmore Road project was a success and opened to traffic before the completion date, which resulted in a 26 working day incentive to the contractor. A total of 19,200 SY of concrete was placed to create the new 10 in concrete pavement and aesthetically pleasing center islands, which along with the landscaping, now give the traveling public and business owners a much needed safer, efficient and aesthetically-pleasing road through the heart of Rapid City. Compete Concrete received the National Award for Excellence in Concrete Pavement for this project from the American Concrete Pavement Association.

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