A two-year, $28 million project to rehabilitate the short-line rail system between Mitchell and Chamberlain, South Dakota was completed and opened for rail traffic on Thursday.
The project, which included the rehabilitation of almost 62 miles of the state-owned rail, was completed through a partnership between the South Dakota Department of Transportation and the Dakota Southern Railway Company. SDDOT and elected officials were on hand to praise the completion of the project, as well as talk about what the rehabilitation means for economic opportunity in the state.
"Rehabilitation of the tracks between Mitchell and Chamberlain has further enhanced shipping choices," said SDDOT Secretary Darin Bergquist in a statement. "It will be great to see South Dakota's farmers reaping the financial benefits of the improved and expanded rail service that not only provides more economical transportation of grain, but also takes many heavy grain trucks off our roads."
South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard agreed with Bergquist's sentiments.
"Rail service is extremely important in South Dakota, and I'm pleased to see successful completion of this multi-year effort," Daugaard said. "The economic benefits of this project are immeasurable."