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State breaks ground on bypass projects

WILLISTON – State officials celebrated the groundbreaking Tuesday of two bypass projects that will relieve traffic in Williston and Alexander in North Dakota’s Oil Patch.

Construction on a 13-mile permanent bypass around Williston will begin this spring. Final completion of the $162 million project is projected for 2015. The four-lane roadway, which will replace a temporary bypass that opened in August 2012, will help meet the forecasted traffic loads for the area.

Work is expected to be completed by fall of 2014 on a $28 million Alexander truck bypass. The 3.7-mile bypass will re-route U.S. Highway 85 to the west of Alexander.

Gov. Jack Dalrymple and North Dakota Department of Transportation Director Grant Levi joined other state and local officials for ceremonial groundbreaking events Tuesday.

“We are committed to continuing to address the impacts of rapid growth in western North Dakota, and a key part of those efforts is to ensure that the region’s roadways are safe and the truck traffic on its main streets is reduced,” Dalrymple said in a statement.

Amy Dalrymple

Amy Dalrymple is a Forum News Service reporter stationed in the Oil Patch. She can be reached at or (701) 580-6890.