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Improvements moving ahead at Big Sioux Rec Area
By By Jill Meier
Challenger editor

May 16. 2013 9:07AM
More improvements are on the horizon this year for the Big Sioux Rec Area near Brandon on property that was jointly purchased more than two years ago.

Jason Bauman, manager of the Big Sioux Rec Area, updated the Brandon City Council May 6 on the planned improvements for 2013.

Improvements on tap for this year include tree plantings in the high use area of the park, along the shoreline for bank stabilization and along residential borders to provide screening. A water hydrant will be installed on the west side of the river near the dog training area, which will allow for installation of a vault toilet and will provide potable water at the site. Bauman said these projects are scheduled for completion this fall.

“The drinking fountain is for two-legged and four-legged animals,” Bauman said.

In late 2010, the South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks, the City of Brandon and South Dakota Parks & Wildlife Foundation, pooled funds to purchase 108 acres of land north and west of the recreation area. A year later, the partnership purchased an additional 15 acres, with the focus then turning to restoration of the area’s natural habitat and development of recreational opportunities.

In 2011, native grasses were planted in the dog training area, dilapidated structures were taken down and a fishing access area was created on the east side of the Big Sioux River.

Last year’s improvements included installing a road and parking area on both the east and west sides of the river, installation of road signs leading into the park, a survey the property for future fencing, and tree and native grass plantings. A canoe access was also added with articulated riprap on the north and south ends of Big Sioux Rec Area.

“The dog training area has been getting quite a bit of use and we expect it to get busier,” Bauman said.

“It’s nice to see they are really using that, and it’s nice to see the kids fishing there,” Alderman Blaine Jones said.

“It’s the fishing hot spot,” Bauman answered.

Projects scheduled for 2014 include a fishing access trail on the west side of the river, additional tree plantings, planting of food plots for wildlife viewing, prairie grass re-establishment, a paved trail north to West Holly Boulevard on the north end of the addition, and extension of the Valley of The Giants Trail north to the canoe launch parking lot. A shelter on the west side of the river is scheduled for completion by the fall of 2014.

Water tower change order
A change in repairs to Brandon’s water tower has added costs of $22,800, bringing the project total to $272,500.

McGuire Iron, the company contracted to sandblast and paint the water tower, said the change order was found necessary after the interior was sandblasted, multiple holes were discovered in the tower’s roof. In addition, the original construction of the tank was not welded at the seams on the tank’s interior. Jon Brown, city engineer said the interior seams will continue to rust if the seams are not addressed.

Water restrictions
The council approved the second reading of Resolution #08-13, which places a restriction on water use.

With the passage of the resolution, the City Council has authorized administration to declare water restrictions whenever usage hits 1.8 million gallons a day for three consecutive days.

The city will use an even-odd system, where properties with odd-numbered addresses can water lawns on odd-numbered days, and likewise with even-numbered properties.
“In the meantime,” Alderwoman Mindy Hansen said, “this does not take place of voluntary water restrictions.”

City Administrator Bryan Read said whenever is water restriction time is declared, the city will notify property owners through the media and the city website.
With the passage of the resolution, the City Council has authorized administration to declare water restrictions whenever usage hits 1.8 million gallons a day for three consecutive days.

The city will use an even-odd system, where properties with odd-numbered addresses can water lawns on odd-numbered days, and likewise with even-numbered properties.

“In the meantime,” Alderwoman Mindy Hansen said, “this does not take place of voluntary water restrictions.”

City Administrator Bryan Read said whenever is water restriction time is declared, the city will notify property owners through the media and the city website.





More improvements are planned for Big Sioux Recreation Area near Brandon this year. Challenger file photo



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