Contractor Who Reconstructed Louise Avenue 30 Years Ago Back At It Again

Greg Branaugh Tells Us What It Takes To Complete $9.4 Million Construction Project

A contractor in Sioux Falls is ripping apart what he built 30 years ago. In 1987, D & G Concrete Construction reconstructed Louise Avenue for $630,000. On Monday, Owner Greg Branaugh says they started digging into his first paving job in the city, reconstructing the same road. This time though, it presents a lot more challenges: more businesses and around 15,000 more cars each day. KDLT’s Jill Johnson talked to him about what it takes to complete the now $9.4 million project.

“You’re compacting 27,000 cars in a mile here and it never ends,” said Branaugh.

For motorists traveling down Louise Avenue, it looks like a mess. But if you watch construction being done, the project is anything but.

“The control person just drove by, they take care of all the cones and everything all the time, every day,” said Branaugh. “We have an underground company, a utility company over here that’s doing sewer and water. One of the subs you see working right now has a specific job that they do and they all do it well.”

Especially on the west side of the street where crews are tearing up the old road.

Branaugh said, “They’re basically tearing concrete off the road, they’re loading it into the truck. The truck comes down here dumps it into a pile, the excavator picks it up, puts it in the crusher, then the loader on the other side picks it up and puts it in a pile.”

The gravel will eventually become Louise Avenue once again.

Branaugh says the key to coordinating it all is making sure the sub-contractors get done and on time. Sometimes that means doing things you don’t get paid for.

“I mean, we hauled snow out of the Empire Mall parking lot today because it was melting onto our job,” said Branaugh.

On a project this big, communication also goes a long way. Restaurants and retailers nearby have all been notified what to expect when. But he says it’s hard to take away all of the surprises.

“I was just over at Gordman’s… ah… they don’t have any power so yeah,” Branuagh said laughing.

Despite having to put out some fires, Branaugh says three decades later there’s nothing else he’d rather do.

“It’s a blast. I do, I really enjoy it.”

Branaugh has plenty of motivation to get the project done. D & G can earn up to $280,000 in bonuses if certain portions are completed by certain dates. The project is expected to be done by mid-November.

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