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Anthony Dorn

Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School


First Advisor

Charles Lamberton


Condition of the network. Rural roads are a crucial link in the transportation of people and agricultural products in South Dakota. The problem transportation decision makers face is that funds are becoming more limited as more and better quality roads are needed. All South Dakota taxpayers are in some way involved with this "dual dilemma." The two critical issues faced by decision makers are the relatively poor condition of the rural infrastructure and the difficult financial status of many communities (Reid and Sullivan, 1986). Condition of the roads. The relatively poor condition of rural South Dakota roads has increased costs to users of the network. Agricultural producers need an adequate road system for hauling commodities to market. Residents living in rural areas need passable roads to travel to and from their homes. Roads and bridges must be able to carry postal service vehicles, fire trucks, and school buses. The use of larger, more economical trucks for hauling grain and livestock has added a larger burden to rural road networks. Much of the inadequacy of the network started at the beginning of the road building days. Subsequent improvements in rural roads and bridges have not kept pace with the needs of agriculture. Most roads and bridges were constructed before 1940 and were not designed to handle the increased weights and widths of today's machinery (Chicoine and Walzer, 1986). Rural roads are the sole link in the transportation of grain from the field to the local elevator. In the early days, grain and other produce was moved from farms to elevators by horse and wagon. The elevators were conveniently located and were tied together by railroads. Horses and wagons have been replaced by heavy machinery and many miles of rail lines have been abandoned. This has led to greater road maintenance costs, less efficient energy use, greater air pollution, and increased taxes (Chicoine and Walzer, 1986).

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Rural roads -- South Dakota -- Maintenance and repair
Farm roads
Rural roads -- Economic aspects -- South Dakota



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University