Kline Street Closed for Two Blocks North of NSU

Don’t try coming to campus via Kline Street:

Kline Street closed for reconstruction, Aberdeen, SD, 2015.07.07
Kline Street closed for reconstruction, Aberdeen, SD, 2015.07.07
Can't drive, can't bike, can't walk—Kline is getting new sidewalks, too! Aberdeen, SD, 2015.07.07
Can’t drive, can’t bike, can’t walk—Kline is getting new sidewalks, too! Aberdeen, SD, 2015.07.07

Three weeks in, and these residents’ only way in and out with their groceries is the alley.

12th Ave completely closed at Kline St, north side of Northern State University campus, Aberdeen, SD, 2015.07.07.
12th Ave completely closed at Kline St, north side of Northern State University campus, Aberdeen, SD, 2015.07.07.
Storm sewer awaits installation at 11th and Kline, Aberdeen, SD 2015.07.07.
Storm sewer awaits installation at 11th and Kline, Aberdeen, SD 2015.07.07.

Aberdeen is spending $1.5 million to rebuild the road and storm sewer down these two blocks and through campus. Rainy weather has been bogging down the work; Kline remains closed until further notice.

8 Responses to Kline Street Closed for Two Blocks North of NSU

  1. It is likely a conspiracy by the government against somebody who lives on that street. Who could that be?

  2. David Newquist

    Kline St. used to run right through the campus, until some time in the early 80’s the college president decided to make it a mall. So a major storm sewer runs under the street and through the campus where the street once was. For the past three years, the storm sewer under Kline St. has been in the process of being replaced. Last year the street was closed off from Sixth Ave. to 10th. The year before that it was closed from Sixth north to third. These closings lasted all summer well into fall.

    I wonder why it takes so long. I live on Main St. under which there is also a major storm sewer which was replaced in a matter of weeks. A performance artist did the replacing. When the street was closed off, a man came in with an end loader, broke up the pavement, moved it to the side of the street where trucks could pick it up, dug into the center of the street, removed the old storm sewer, set the new segments into place and nudged them into a tight fit, repacked the soil around it, smoothed out the surface so the paving guys could come in, and moved onto the next block. For most of the time during the few days it took, the only guy in sight was the man working the end-loader. In a few weeks the whole job was done.

    Kline St. is a different story. I know the street is being widened and paved with concrete, and folks are getting new sidewalks, but the difference in the time from what it took on Main St. is puzzling. There are no alleys paralleling Main St., so we had to park on side streets for a few days and carry our groceries. But it was only for a few days. Eat your heart out Kline St. Over three years.

  3. David, how many blocks of Main Street did that storm sewer project affect?

    My Aberdeen experience has made me appreciate alleys. Is there any good practical reason for a block not to have an alley?

  4. Douglas Wiken

    Seems like a lot of money for 700 or 800 yards of concrete.

  5. David, hasnt it been longer than three years. Storm sewer has been replaced in 2-3 block increments starting at the tracks just north of central park. It is a much needed improvement as the old storm sewer is just that….OLD.

    This is a good investment in Aberdeen.

    Anyone remember the sink hole on Kline St near 3rd Ave SE(CLOSE TO SAFE HARBOR)

  6. Richard Schriever

    Corey, I love alleys. They are very practical, and IMO, should be a design feature of ALL urban development. With utilities running down alleys (vs. streets), there is almost NEVER any traffic or parking or business access interruption due to utility work. They provide additional non-traffic interrupting access for emergency vehicles, garbage trucks, deliveries and other services. They reduce the number of driveways opening onto the streets, thus making streets safer to travel on, and sidewalks safer for walking. They encourage more neighbor to neighbor interactions and so on. The ONLY reason alleys have disappeared from modern development design is the same-old, same-old. developers want LARGER LOTS (more $$/sq ft.) to sell for higher prices. Making practical utility of our living spaces be damned – gimmee money!!!

  7. Well to be fair, alleys have also disappeared because people wanted more private back yards without having cars running up and down behind their homes. There is also the crime argument (who hasn’t heard of the back alley criminal) and many, many alley structures are broken into because they are generally not well lit, not attached to homes, and the alleys don’t see a lot of drive-by traffic that might see something.

    There is also the issue of maintenance. Someone has to maintain that alley and remove snow. Someone has to pay for the asphalt or concrete. The road in front of the homes still needs to exist and has to remain as wide so you end up with more infrastructure to pay for.

    I do like the idea of alleys and I like the idea of keeping utilities in the back of the property where they are less visible and don’t require roads to be torn up to maintain them. Added bonus is having garbage removal from the alley which can allow cans to remain in designated areas with no need to take them in and out of a garage each week (where many people just give up and leave them out almost all the time regardless of what city ordinance says they should do). I also like the idea of keeping cars and garages in the back as it reduces or eliminates vehicles backing into the roadway which is a safety factor.

    However, modern buyers have voted with their dollars and have overwhelmingly supported the removal of alleys for a number of reasons, so I doubt we will see them coming back. The city of Brandon has a development where they added alleys and designed homes to have rear garages, but the trend didn’t catch on and eventually I believe some of the empty lots ended up having homes constructed with more typical front access garages.

    People know what they want regardless of what a city designer thinks they should like I suppose.

  8. David Newquist

    DR and Cory,

    It may well have been more than three years ago. And it was done a few blocks at a time, I presume because asphalt paving can be done in smaller segments. But lingers on the mind is that one man and his end loader. A real show. Before the storm sewer replacement, the neighborhood had water over the curbs and flooded basements. Sometimes had to decide whether to travel by waders or canoe to get to the NSU campus.