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Military Road Bridge (copy)

The Military Road Bridge over the Big Sioux River is shown looking north into North Sioux City. The Sioux City Council will have to approve new agreements with the City of North Sioux City and the South Dakota Department of Transportation for a road reconstruction and bridge rehabilitation project to move forward.

SIOUX CITY – The Sioux City Council will be asked Monday to rescind an agreement with the city of North Sioux City to help finance construction costs for the Military Road reconstruction and bridge rehabilitation project because the cost of the bridge portion of the project came in more than 15 percent above the engineer’s estimated cost.

According to city documents, the change renders the jurisdiction transfer agreement among the South Dakota Department of Transportation, North Sioux City and Sioux City null and void. Revised versions of this agreement and a 28E agreement need to be executed for North Sioux City to provide funding for the project.

The bridge re-decking is one of two stages in a 10-month long project along Military Road. The second stage includes a full reconstruction of the road from the bridge to Riverside Boulevard. The engineer's opinion of probable construction costs for the work is $6,125,500. The South Dakota Department of Transportation and North Sioux City are contributing $1,878,000 to the project based on actual bid prices, according to the documents.

The bridge re-decking project, which the city of Sioux City had originally slotted to begin this year, was previously delayed because the permit application the city submitted to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in February 2017 was backlogged among several other project permits from other cities and entities. The project has a late start date of May 1.

After the project gets underway, contractors will have 70 working days to complete the street reconstruction. According to city documents, Military Road will not be closed to local traffic from River Drive in North Sioux City to River Drive in Sioux City for more than 150 days.

In April 2017, the council decided to fully close the Military Road Bridge for the re-decking project rather than keep one lane open at a time, which engineers said would drive up the cost of the project. The decision came despite push-back from several nearby North Sioux City business owners who believe the bridge closure will prove detrimental to their sales by blocking incoming traffic.

Eminent domain case

At its weekly meeting, the council is also expected to vote on approving an $82,500 settlement with Sioux River Properties, LLC in an eminent domain dispute over land value.

The city opted to use eminent domain in 2017 to acquire nearly 9,000 square feet of land and more than 15,000 square feet in easements on the property of Brad Lepper for the Big Sioux River Trail project.

After the Woodbury County Compensation Commission decided $34,000 would be an appropriate purchase price for the land, the city appealed that ruling, contending it should pay less.

Lepper had agreed to take the $34,000 named by the commission prior to the city's appeal. The city had originally offered Lepper just under $16,500 for the property.

If the council rejects the settlement, the case would proceed to trial.

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