Highway 42 bridge to re-open for rest of the year

The James River near Mitchell is pictured during September 2019 flooding. (Matt Gade / Republic)

The South Dakota Department of Transportation says it will reopen the James River bridge on State Highway 42 on Tuesday.

The bridge — which is located 8 miles east of Ethan and about 9 miles southwest of Alexandria — was closed Aug. 5 so a new structure could be constructed over the James River and had a completion date of July 3, 2020. The project was estimated to cost $7.25 million.

Due to the flooding of the James River, construction crews have done all they can with the high-water levels and the remaining work to replace the bridge will take place during the summer of 2020, the DOT said.

The bridge will remain open until work can resume in the summer of 2020. The project includes removing the existing bridge, constructing a new bridge spanning the river and raising the elevation of the roadway through the river valley approximately three feet.

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