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Utility Improvements

Street and Utility Improvements

June 3, 2024

Poor drainage was causing accelerated deterioration along Hawarden’s Avenue L, which serves as the primary collector route to the town’s nursing facilities and the local hospital. When repeat efforts to patch and repair this critical stretch of roadway were only fleetingly effective, the City of Hawarden partnered with DGR Engineering to develop a comprehensive approach for improving Avenue L for the long-term benefit of the community.

The improvements included installing a new storm sewer system, making repairs to the existing water main and sanitary sewer, and taking steps to improve future drainage, all before installing new 6” concrete pavement.

Infrastructure Improvements

April 8, 2024

DGR Engineering (DGR) and the Town of Chancellor worked together to plan an infrastructure improvements project. Ultimately, solutions were divided into three project phases. Phase 1 included Main Street and the west half of the community. The Town of Chancellor received funding which included nearly 89% in grants and principal loan forgiveness.

Phase 1 included the beginning of a new storm sewer system. DGR and the Town worked with landowners to acquire the needed land and easements for a new storm sewer outlet. It allowed the storm sewer to be extended across the southern end of town in each of the phases of construction, connecting each of the street’s drainage to a larger diameter storm pipe to improve drainage.
Chancellor was awarded Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds for their planned Phase 2 project, which covered the central part of the community. They followed with funding for their Phase 3 project and were successful in securing approximately 85% grant and principal loan forgiveness for both Phase 2 and Phase 3 projects.

Each of the project phases included the replacement of sanitary sewer main and services with PVC pipe, replacement of all sanitary manholes with new concrete manholes, replacement and up-sizing of PVC pipe water main and water services as well as adding additional water services to areas that previously did not have existing water main. New street surfacing was placed after the underground improvements. While Main Street included concrete surfacing on the north two blocks, the remaining streets will maintain a rural section paved with asphalt surfacing. The rural section is designed with minor ditches graded along the roadways and culvert replacement at the driveways and intersections to allow the stormwater to flow to the storm sewer system, located at the southern portions of the streets, to reduce the stormwater ponding that had occurred.

The infrastructure investment will significantly improve and benefit the community and all residents. They are looking forward to project completion and many years ahead with reliable infrastructure to support their Town.

Street & Utility Improvements

July 28, 2021

Street & Utility Improvements


Sioux City Project updates
Morningside Avenue

Project Owner:
City of Sioux City, IA

Key Experience:

  • Planning and coordination with local businesses to maintain access during construction
  • Improving drainage along the corridor by adding storm sewer
  • Major intersection reconstruction completed half at a time

Key Features:

  • New utilities (sanitary sewer and water main) including adding storm sewer where none previously existed along with decorative street lighting and colored concrete sidewalks
  • Several stages of construction allowing business access at all times during construction
  • Involved a major intersection of two arterial streets with Morningside Avenue and S. Lakeport Street

Morningside Avenue is a main arterial street though the Morningside neighborhood of Sioux City, IA. The original infrastructure dated back to the early 1900’s, with streetcar tracks actually buried under the paving. This project also included the intersection of S. Lakeport Street, a north-south arterial street that extends to Gordon Drive.

Morningside Avenue was reconstructed from just east of S. Nicollet Street to east of S. Lakeport Street totaling approximately 1,300 linear feet. The project included new sanitary sewer, water main (replacing two existing mains), storm sewer, fiber conduits, decorative street lighting, and 9-inch concrete paving with colored concrete sidewalks.

To provide customer and truck delivery access to adjacent businesses, the project was completed in seven stages (including removing/replacing temporary crossovers on S. Lakeport Street through a raised median).

Stage 1a was installing new storm sewer along a portion of S. Clinton from Morningside Avenue to south of intersection of Garretson Avenue and S. Clinton. This provided a storm sewer outlet for Morningside Avenue where none previously existed.

Stage 1b was the reconstruction of Morningside Avenue from just east of S. Nicollet Street east to S. Henry Street.

Stage 2 was extending the reconstruction of Morningside Avenue from S. Henry Street to just short of the S. Lakeport Street intersection.

The final four stages included reconstruction of the intersection of Morningside Avenue and S. Lakeport Street in order to replace utilities and install a new traffic signal. DGR Engineering (DGR) coordinated with the City and contractor to maintain one lane of northbound and southbound traffic on S. Lakeport Street at all times throughout the entire project.

Stage 1a and 1b were completed in 2018. Stages 2, 3a, 3b and 4a and 4b were completed in 2019.

DGR services included gathering survey and utility data needed to prepare detailed plans and specifications as well as construction administration and observation using Federal Aid Funding for the reconstruction of Morningside Avenue.


Sanitary Sewer

July 20, 2021

Sanitary Sewer

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Gravity sewer provides for both existing and future development

Sioux City’s Southeast Morningside Sanitary Sewer

Project Owner:
City of Sioux City, IA

Key Experience:

  • Lift station improvements
  • Large diameter sewer design
  • Gravity siphon design
  • Directional bore sewer installation
  • Low water crossing

Key Features:

  • 10,069 linear feet of 24” and 30” gravity sewer
  • 4,628 feet of twin 10” force main
  • VFD pump controls
  • Flow meter installation

The City of Sioux City had been seeing residential development on the east side of the city in the area of Whispering Creek Golf Course. The hilly terrain, however, limited the area that could be served by the existing sanitary sewer lift station on Whispering Creek Drive. This lift station was also experiencing problems due to the limited capacity of the gravity sanitary sewer to which the force main from the lift station was discharging.

DGR Engineering (DGR) worked with the city to develop a plan for a new gravity sanitary sewer that would open up additional development area as well as provide adequate capacity for discharges from the Whispering Creek sanitary sewer lift station.

In the early 1990’s DGR designed the Southeast Morningside sanitary sewer lift station in the southeast corner of the city. The location of this new Southeast Morningside Lift Station allowed for gravity sewer service to area which is now home to the Sunnybrook Plaza, Sunnybook Village and Lakeport Commons commercial areas in the southeast corner of town and was also designed to provide addition future capacity though pump upgrades to serve additional residential development including the area where the city was seeing growth.

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The final plan included over 10,000 feet of 24” and 30” gravity sanitary sewer starting at the Southeast Morningside Lift Station and running south and east along an existing drainage way and then north in an abandoned railroad right of way to Old Highway 141. The gravity sewer continues north through portions of the new Eagle Ridge and Whispering View Subdivisions. An inverted siphon was required for the crossing of the existing creek just south of the Southeast Morningside Lift Station. A granular access road was constructed along much of the gravity sewer to provide maintenance access. A low water crossing was installed at the creek in one location as an alternative to much more expensive box culvert or bridge options.

The upper end of the gravity sewer serves as the discharge point for twin 10” force mains (one for current conditions with a second for future development) from the Whispering Creek Lift Station.

The force mains run along portions of the Whispering Creek Golf Course and cross under holes 1 and 9 requiring a 1,000 foot long directional bore.

The Whispering Creek Lift Station was retrofitted with VFP pump controls to reduce operating cost and better match the pump output to existing and future flows. A flow meter was also installed in a vault downstream from the lift station to meet current IDNR requirements.

The new gravity sewer is already being utilized by several new additions to the Whispering View Subdivision and the initial phase of the Eagle Ridge Subdivision.

Funding for the project included the use of state Revolving Loan funds to be repaid with future sanitary sewer service area fees.

Click here to read this story in the newsletter.

Site Development

April 30, 2021

Site Development


new sioux city school built
on site of existing facility

Multi-year, Multi-stage Project Maximizes Usable Space

Project Owner:
Sioux City Community School District, Sioux City, IA

Bryant Elementary School

Key Experience:

  • Maximize usable space in a tight area with steep terrain (26.5 feet of elevation difference across the site)
  • High level of project coordination with entities involved, included school, city, neighbors, architects, engineers, private utility companies and contractors to layout and complete a schedule for a multi-year, multi-stage project with three bid packages within a proposed budget
  • Reconstruct surrounding streets during site work

The central core of Sioux City, IA is growing in student population and with an existing building constructed in the late 1800’s, the school district listed Bryant Elementary School as a top priority for replacement. It was determined using a school district demographic study that a school capable of housing 650 K-5 students would be required. In 2012, DGR Engineering assisted with site selection for the proposed school building. After thorough review of over a dozen possible sites, the existing Bryant Elementary School site was chosen. Due to the increased need in building size, the existing 2.48 acre site was expanded to 4.31 acres through acquisition of eight residential single-family dwellings as well as some City right-of-way (street and alley). A multi-year, multi-staged project that included three bid packages was planned.

Following approval of the plan to expand the existing site to the south and east, property acquisitions and relocations commenced. Bid Package 1 (BP1) included building and site demolition, utilities and grading which included over-excavation and re-compaction of soils below proposed building footings and foundation, retaining walls and paving.

Also during this time, Jennings Street, 31st Street and Jones Street, which were similar in age to the existing school, were reconstructed in a partnership agreement with the City of Sioux City. Along with street reconstruction the utilities were replaced. There were existing 30” water mains in Jones and Jennings Street (with different pressure ratings) that were improved by installing internal seals at the joints. These existing 30” water mains were potholed during design phase to establish location and elevation in order for other proposed utilities to cross them without conflict.

A total of approximately 1,675 linear feet of street including four intersections plus 200 linear feet of relocated City alley through the site was replaced. Work on BP1 was completed in fall of 2017.

Bid Package 2 (BP2) was also completed in year 2016 in coordination with BP1 and included two site geothermal well fields totaling 230 wells at approximately 300 feet deep. The geothermal well field will heat and cool the new school and has been the practice with all the new elementary schools in Sioux City since 2007.

Finally, Bid Package 3 (BP3) included the building construction with remaining site work (final grading, sidewalks, fencing, etc.) adjacent to the building.