South Dakota State Veterans Cemetery
The South Dakota State Veterans Cemetery project was awarded by the Office of the State Engineer, on behalf of the South Dakota Department of Veterans Affairs, to Stockwell Engineers in the summer of 2018. The project included the master planning, design development, bidding, and construction administration of a new cemetery just north of Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The 60-acre project site is hilly with steep slopes. A large portion of the site’s perimeter is defined by low-lying wooded streams, while most of the site was previously used for agriculture. The very steep slopes and rolling topography created many design challenges for the engineer. Stockwell was tasked with creating design solutions that would allow for proper grading and drainage while providing relatively flat areas for casket plots. Furthermore, to keep construction costs down, the engineer worked to balance cut and fill numbers, reducing the amount of dirt required to be moved on or off the project site.
Currently, Stockwell is fulfilling construction administration for the first phase of the South Dakota State Veterans Cemetery project. This project phase includes an administration building with offices and restrooms, a gravesite kiosk, a connected maintenance shop, a committal service shelter, an avenue of flags, a memorial walk and assembly area, irrigation, utilities, above-ground columbariums with 660 niches, 999 in-ground cremain sites, 598 pre-placed double-depth crypts, 12 oversized double-depth pre-placed crypts, a memorial wall with 50 wall markers and a scatter garden. All of these amenities are oriented along a visual axis that runs straight through the center of the site, from the entrance of the cemetery up towards a 70’ flagpole placed atop the highest point of the site. The flag can be seen from miles away, and acts as a defining feature, marking the great destination that the cemetery is certain to become.
The current phase under construction is the first phase of ten total phases. This first phase covers nearly 13 acres of the overall 60-acre site. While this first project phase provides 2,319 total gravesites, the entire 10-phase project provides over 28,000 gravesites, serving veterans and their families throughout the region.
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