Sioux Center considers revamping DQ corner

The city of Sioux Center is looking to revamp the “DQ corner” in Sioux Center before the Highway 75 expansion project gets underway.

SIOUX CENTER—The city of Sioux Center is looking to revamp the intersection by Dairy Queen in Sioux Center before the Highway 75 expansion project gets underway.

The Sioux Center City Council has heard at a previous meeting this spring that the Iowa Department of Transportation is including reconstruction of 16th Street Southwest, especially from the Frontage Road intersection to Highway 75, to aid traffic flow due to highway changes after construction.

The widening and repositioning of that road could affect the intersection of 16th Street Southwest and First Avenue Southwest. City utilities manager Murray Hulstein said with a development opportunity coming to the property north of 16th Street Southwest, revamping the DQ intersection would include altering its position, widening parts and extending First Avenue Southwest to the north. The project would also include sidewalk and storm sewer improvements.

The work would create a four-way stop intersection with the potential to have a traffic light added in the future.

Hulstein said there is some urgency to get the 16th Street Southwest/ First Avenue Southwest project done ahead of the Highway 75 expansion project. The city, however, only had one bid of $684,769.83 from Vander Pol Excavating of Orange City for the 16th Street Southwest/ First Avenue Southwest project — higher than the engineer’s project estimate of $490,000.

Hulstein told the council this intersection project isn’t a desirable one for contractors. That’s partly due to it being a smaller project, partly because of it needing to be done in two phases to keep traffic flow open to Snap Fitness and ProActive Physical Therapy as well as Walmart and because partly that contractors are busy and this project has a tight deadline.

With city-owned property being prepared for commercial and retail businesses on the north side of town, the council tabled the bid and encouraged city staff to see if a new bid package could be created to lump some projects together to see if more bids would come in.