Rain Puts Damper on Construction Projects

(SIOUX CITY, IA) When it's raining, construction workers get to stay inside.

The Iowa DOT has many projects going on around Siouxland, but today all of them came to a halt, and will remain that way until the sun comes out.

It's one of the only times you'll see construction projects stop dead in their tracks - when Mother Nature decides it's thirsty. Because dirt turns into a muddy mess, construction workers are stuck staying inside until the rain goes away.

"There really is very little that can happen while it's raining. Once the rain stops, there may be some things they can start getting ready for and preparing," said Dean Herbst with the Iowa Department of Transportation.

Like grading the mud and drying it out - getting it back to the dirt like consistency. The Iowa DOT says that's the only time workers can compact the dirt properly.

Otherwise, "It creates an unstable base so that the more stable of a base you have the longer the road will last. Anytime you move it, you want to get it compacted so that it doesn't settle," said Herbst.

And so we don't have to settle for a road that may become uneven in the future.

It's a good plan, but rainy days do slow things down a bit, like construction down by Highway 20 and I-29.

The loop to Highway 20 West is closed, which means you'll have to take the Floyd Boulevard exit, make a U-turn and head South on I-29 to the Highway 20 exit towards Nebraska.

And the loop to I-29 North is closed as well. You'll have to drive South on I-29 to the Singing Hills exit, turn around, then head North on I-29.

But there is light at the end of the tunnel. Remember the Wesley Parkway construction? Well, that's almost finished.

"Any piece that you can get complete is a milestone to reach, so it definitely feels good when you reach those milestones," said Herbst.

And once the rain stops and the sun comes out, hopefully the next milestone will be those loop detours!

Those detours began October 9th and the Iowa DOT says it will take 45 days to complete those projects. Obviously, weather permitting.