PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — Contractors chose to stay on the sideline rather than compete to mark 613 miles of pavement on South Dakota roads belonging to counties in the Aberdeen region.
The reason probably was a temporary shortage of marking material, according to Sam Weisgram, who works for the state Department of Transportation.
He told the South Dakota Transportation Commission that the project probably would draw bids when it’s offered a second time, but the work might not be done until 2022.
Commissioner Mike Vehle of Mitchell said he had difficulty seeing pavement markings on I-90 when he drove through the rain to Pierre for the meeting Thursday.
Christina Bennett, a DOT engineer, said the markings on most roads are paint that contains reflective glass beads. When beads are under water, they don’t reflect, she said.
Select routes get higher-quality treatment that involves cutting a more-protective groove and is more expensive, according to Bennett. She said standard markings can last as long as three years.
Vehle asked what happens when snow plows grind across markings. Bennett said they suffer “a fair amount” of damage.
The commission approved low bids for five other projects, including one for marking about 77 miles of pavement in the Pierre region. Its low bid came in slightly below the department estimate.