Department of Transportation approves $25 million interchange south of Sioux City
SOUTH OF SIOUX CITY (KTIV) - The intersection of 235th Street and Port Neal Road in rural Woodbury County doesn’t look like much, but soon it will be a highway interchange connecting all the industry south of Sergeant Bluff in Sioux City with I-29.
But that’s going to come at a cost of about $25 million. And it’s going to require the government to acquire about 60 acres of land they don’t currently have from private landowners.
“What happened is the interchange justification report was completed and submitted to federal highway. And federal highway has since given approval on the interchange justification,” said Dakin Schultz, Iowa DOT District 3 transportation planner.
The idea for the interchange started with the Woodbury County government, but soon it will be taken over by the Iowa Department of Transportation. Federal law requires the state DOT to do any work that involves the interstate highway.
But while the project will be built by the state, it will be at least partially paid for by local governments.
“And prior to doing bonding, the county will be exploring every option to find grants to assist us with the development of the interchange,” said Mark Nahra, Woodbury County engineer.
The interchange is outside Sioux City limits, but city officials say they are still excited. They view the interchange as a way to bring in further businesses and jobs. And bolster industries already south of the city.
“It’s an area that’s really well suited for industrial growth. We’ve put a water treatment plant down there a few years ago in a rail yard. So it’s well suited. And this will just help complement that and help it grow if we think in a faster way,” said Marty Dougherty, Sioux City economic and community development director.
But not everyone is thrilled by the idea of a new interchange. One landowner who declined to be interviewed on camera said the interchange would carve a path right through her farm.
She dubbed it the “bridge to nowhere.”
Officials say the earliest construction would begin on the bridge is 2027. Right now, the project remains in the design phase, but preliminary models show the interchange would be a standard diamond intersection.
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