Repair work on Japanese Gardens nearing completion

Local News

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) – If you’ve walked past the Japanese Gardens in Sioux Falls lately, you may have noticed some work being done. Now crews say the project is almost complete.

Over the last few years, the pergolas started to show their age, meaning it was time for renovations.

“The Japanese Gardens were started in the 30s and they just have needed repair for awhile,” owner of Swift Contractors, Terry Kelley said. “These pergolas haven’t been touched since they were built, and over the years there has been some ground movement and some cracking and mortar and things like that.”

Back in February we showed you how crews were tasked with repairing the columns, while still using the original stones.

“When we got the new precast columns and beams we put them right in front of each other, took the stone off and put it right back on in almost the same original location,” Kelley said. “We were able to source what was missing because there were a lot of small stones that were gone or had been misplaced over the years,”

Now the columns are being put back into place.

“We are welding on the pergolas right now, the weld plates,” superintendent Swift Contractors, Phillip Helton said. “And start setting the stone around the columns, then we are going to drill and pin the rafters, once the mortar sets up, on top, that will be next week.”

A piece of a Sioux Falls Park that will soon be ready for everyone to enjoy once again.

“It’s used quite a bit, so it’s good that we will be out of here because we take up a lot of space when we are working down here and get it back open to everybody, plus the city can get in here and start getting it cleaned up for the summer’s usage,” Kelley said.

Crews should be wrapped up next week sometime, however there are some weather dependent items that will need to be done before the project is completely finished, like painting touch ups and landscaping.

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