South Dakota Department of Transportation US 385 Construction Project Skip to main content

Construction Updates

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Construction Zone Reminders

  • Follow posted speed limits in construction zones.
  • Be aware of flaggers and other construction workers in the construction area.
  • If you are following a pilot car, stay with the line, and do not stop or exit your vehicle in the project area.

Friday, April 19, 2024

Expect Delays, Flagging, and Traffic Diversions

Current Conditions

  • Users of the roadway can expect delays of 15 minutes and the use of pilot cars and flaggers.
  • Traffic is being diverted on two gravel diversions (a temporary at-grade roadway next to the original road).
    • Diversion 1 is approximately 3/4-mile north of the intersection of U.S. Highway 385 and S.D. Highway 44. A width restriction of 12 feet is in place.
    • Diversion 2 is immediately south of the Pennington-Lawrence County Line. A width restriction of 12 feet is in place.
  • The contractor is installing a box culvert approximately 3/4-mile north of the intersection of Highway 385 and Highway 44. This box culvert will carry the natural drainage under the roadway.
Gravel road diversion
Culvert installation

Coming Up

  • Traffic is being kept on existing pavement for as long as possible as construction progresses.
  • Temporary fence installation will begin later this spring in the project area.
  • Complete road closures within the project area begin next month.

Road Closures Beginning Monday, May 20, 2024

  • The Pactola North Boat Ramp will not be accessible during weekdays from Monday, May 20, 2024 through Friday, June 7, 2024 (accessible on weekends and Memorial Day from the north). After Friday, June 7, 2024, the Pactola North Boat Ramp will only be accessible from the north. Access will be available to the Pactola North Boat Ramp from all directions after Friday, July 12, 2024.
  • Access to the Pactola South Boat Ramp will not be impacted during these closures. Boaters can access the South Boat ramp via Highway 16/Highway 385 or Sheridan Lake Road/Highway 385.
  • The posted detour will be S.D. Highway 44 and U.S. Highway 16. Locals may find alternative routes, but the SDDOT recommends travelers exercise caution when using non-maintained roadways.
  • Emergency services are aware of these closures and are closely collaborating to provide response coverage.
  • Non-closed areas within the project limits (Pennington-Lawrence County Line to Highway 44) will be under construction during closures.
Construction Phasing diagram
April 12, 2024

Gravel Diversion in Effect beginning Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Beginning Tuesday, April 16, 2024, traffic will be diverted onto a 1,000-foot gravel diversion to begin work on a box culvert. The location of the diversion is immediately south of the Lawrence-Pennington County Line. The 12-foot width restriction will remain in place.

For further information regarding this project, contact Tim Wicks via email at tim.wicks@state.sd.us. For updates on major traffic changes, subscribe to a free text-in service. To subscribe, simply text “US385” to 605-566-4041. Subscribers can unsubscribe at any time.

Friday, April 5, 2024

Pilot Cars, Flagging, and Traffic Diversions

Current Conditions

  • Users of the roadway can expect delays of 15 minutes and the use of pilot cars and flaggers.
  • Traffic is being diverted on a gravel diversion (a temporary at-grade roadway next to the original road) approximately 3/4-mile north of the intersection of U.S. Highway 385 and S.D. Highway 44. A width restriction of 12 feet is in place.
  • The contractor is installing a box culvert approximately 3/4-mile north of the intersection of Highway 385 and Highway 44. This box culvert will direct water under the roadway to reduce erosion during storm events.
  • Construction on a second diversion is underway. This diversion is located immediately south of the Pennington-Lawrence County Line.
Re-bar and framing for new road
Construction vehicle moving dirt.

March 2024 Drone Footage

 

Coming Up

  • Traffic is being kept on existing pavement or as long as possible as construction progresses.
  • Traffic is expected to be diverted on to a second diversion, located immediately south of the Pennington-Lawrence County Line, in mid-April. A press release and text message alert will be distributed to share further details.
  • The contractor is preparing to pour the floor of the box culvert near Highway 44.
  • Temporary fence installation will begin later this spring in the project area.
  • Rock blasting may occur within the project area in the next month. If rock blasting occurs, the roadway will have signage and text alerts will be sent. Rock blasting could result in 1-2 hours of delay for roadway users and is expected to take place in early afternoons on weekdays.

Construction Zone Reminders

  • Follow posted speed limits in construction zones.
  • Be aware of flaggers and other construction workers in the construction area.
  • If you are following a pilot car, stay with the line and do not stop or exit your vehicle in the project area.
March 4, 2024

Gravel Diversion in Effect beginning Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Beginning Tuesday, March 5, 2024, traffic will be diverted onto a gravel diversion as the contractor begins work on a box culvert. The diversion will begin approximately ¾-mile north of the intersection of U.S. Highway 385 and S.D. Highway 44. A width restriction of 12 feet will be in place.

For further information regarding this project, contact Tim Wicks via email at tim.wicks@state.sd.us. For updates on major traffic changes, subscribe to a free text-in service. To subscribe, simply text “US385” to 605-566-4041. Subscribers can unsubscribe at any time.

March 1, 2024

Phase 1 Traffic Impacts Begin March 12, 2024


Phase 1 construction will begin on March 12, 2024 and will continue through winter of 2025. Phase 1 include a number of traffic impacts, including shoofly detours (detours on gravel roads built parallel to the existing roadway), diversions (smaller-scale shoofly detours). There will also be complete closures from S.D. Highway 44 to the northern end of Pactola Dam, rock blasting with temporary closures, and pilot cars with wait times.

Users of the roadway can expect delays of 20 minutes during construction in areas that remain open to traffic and up to 1-2 hours during rock blasting. To avoid unknown wait times, consider using the posted detour of S.D. Highway 44 and U.S. Highway 16.

Phase 1 Construction Details
Feb. 19, 2024

Pre-Construction Informational Meeting Scheduled for March 12, 2024

The South Dakota Department of Transportation (SDDOT) will hold a pre-construction informational meeting to share project details about the U.S. Highway 385 construction project scheduled for 2024-2026. The meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, March 12, 2024, from 4-7 p.m. (MT) at Rimrock Church, located at 12200 S.D. Highway 44 in Rapid City.

The open house-style meeting will be informal, consisting of a pre-recorded presentation and one-on-one discussion with the project team. A recorded presentation will be playing throughout the meeting, and members of the project team will be available with displays to discuss the construction project and answer questions.

The goal of this meeting is to share overall construction phasing plans and share specific information about the 2024 construction season, which begins in March. This construction season will include significant traffic impacts including full road closures.

Individuals needing assistance, pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), should contact the SDDOT ADA Coordinator (605-773-3540) two business days prior to the meeting in order to ensure accommodations are available. For any in-person meeting, notice is further given to individuals with disabilities that the meeting is being held in a physically accessible location.

For further information regarding this project, contact Tim Wicks via email at tim.wicks@state.sd.us. For updates on major traffic changes, subscribe to a free text-in service. To subscribe, simply text “US385” to 605-566-4041. Subscribers can unsubscribe at any time.

Nov. 15, 2023

Phase 1 Tree Clearing Begins on Monday, Nov. 27, 2023

On Monday, Nov. 27, 2023, Zandra Construction will begin clearing trees along U.S. Highway 385 from the north side of Pactola Dam to the Pennington-Lawrence County line. Traffic will be controlled by pilot car, and fifteen-minute delays are expected. Drivers are urged to use caution and reduce their speed while traveling through the construction area.

This is a preliminary effort of phase one of the U.S. Highway 385 construction project, which is scheduled to begin in spring of 2024.

UPDATED: Oct. 5, 2023

2024 Construction Highlights

Phase 1 Construction Details

Construction will begin in one year, and the South Dakota Department of Transportation (SDDOT) is conducting stakeholder and public outreach in preparation of spring 2024. The project team held an informational open house on Thursday, April 27, 2023 at Rimrock Church. Stakeholders and members of the public reviewed a presentation and had one-on-one conversations with the project team. The focal point of this event was discussing the upcoming construction of Phase 1, which includes two complete closures, as detailed below.

Closure A:
Boat Ramp to Pactola Dam
Closed May 20-July 12, 2024
*No work from July 31-Aug. 12, 2024 for Rally.
View Map

Closure B:
S.D. Highway 44 to Boat Ramp
Closed May 20-June 7, 2024
Open Memorial Day (Monday, May 27, 2024)
*Road will be open Fridays at noon-Mondays at 6 a.m. for boat ramp access from the north.
View Map

April 7, 2022

Welcome to the Project Website

Welcome to the project website for U.S. Highway 385 Construction. We are happy you're here and look forward to connecting with local communities before, during, and after the project. We are currently finalizing plans for construction, acquiring necessary Right-of-Way (ROW), and preparing to begin stakeholder and public outreach. Bookmark this page to easily return and view updates. To ensure you do not miss any information, sign up for the project newsletter above!