To combat the eroding river bank near the swim beach in Griffin Park in Pierre, the city will install new riprap next week.
Due to high river flows and saturated soil, the river bank started eroding last summer. The City will put about 175 tons of rock along the bank to stabilize it and prevent infrastructure damage.
According to Brad Palmer, City Utilities Director, about five feet of bank was lost in the last several months and the embankment is inching closer to the walking path that runs through Griffin Park.
Palmer says for safety reasons, the section of the walking path near the erosion is closed until repairs are made.
The federal government has jurisdiction over the Missouri River; the State of South Dakota controls the land adjacent to the river and Pierre leases the land from the State. Consequently, approvals were needed from both federal and state government agencies before the riprap could be installed. Necessary permission from the South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers were received in late February, allowing the City to move forward with the project.
Riprap will be placed along approximately 225 feet of Griffin Park riverfront. Work is expected to be complete by the end of next week.