City of Brandon to upgrade crosswalks

Local News

BRANDON, S.D. (KELO)– An 11-year-old boy’s hard work is paying off. 

KELOLAND News first introduced you to Ryley McKeown last year. He was hit by a pickup and decided to share his story with the Brandon city council and mayor in October. He asked them to make the city streets and intersections safer for kids. 

The city is responding.  This week, the council voted unanimously to spend thousands of dollars to make Ryley’s request a reality. 

It may be a rainy day, but it’s not stopping Ryley McKeown from getting a little bit of bike riding in after school.

It’s a hobby the 11-year old enjoys, that’s why he’s excited about what happened at this week’s council meeting in Brandon.

“I’m very happy with the outcome,” 11-year old Ryley McKeown said.

City Engineer Tami Jansma presented the street maintenance budget, which includes about $40,000 to upgrade Brandon’s crosswalks.

“There’s about 8 intersections along Holly Blvd that will be upgraded, but then we’re also taking a look at two other intersections in town that need a few upgrades,” City Engineer, Tami Jansma said. “Three intersections we’re going to add RRFBs, which are rectangular rapid flashing beacons, and so when the kids go to that crosswalk they are able to just push a button, then there’s LED lights in yellow that will flash.”

The city council unanimously approved the street maintenance budget.

“I think Ryley’s part of it has played a huge role in how we reorganized our budget and how we’re putting more funds towards upgrading these crosswalks, I’m not sure that would have happened without him coming to council,” Jansma said.

Leaving this 11 year old knowing he’s making a difference in his community.

“It made me feel great because when they passed it, I thought about how that would help during the summer and people could ride their bikes around town and I could actually know that I did something,” McKeown said.

Jansma says the improvements also include replacing traffic signs in school zones and adding crosswalk striping. 

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