Highway 22 could see $2.5M in improvementsA bustling Highway 22 could see major safety improvements this summer, roughly $2.5 million worth, dependant on state and federal funding.
A bustling Highway 22 could see major safety improvements this summer, roughly $2.5 million worth, dependant on state and federal funding.
The North Dakota Department of Transportation is designing a safety improvement project for Highway 22 to span from Dickinson’s north city limit to the Stark/Dunn County line, said Larry Gangl, NDDOT’s Dickinson district engineer.
Spanning about 3.5 miles, improvements would include offset right turn lanes, bypass lanes, left turn lanes and possible approach changes, Gangl said.
“Overall, that should improve the overall safety of that corridor,” he said.
The DOT will look at adding offset right turn lanes on higher-volume highway approaches.
“They’re mainly used to assist people in turning maneuvers to get them off the road so through traffic can keep going,” Gangl said.
The project is tentatively scheduled for bid in June, provided funding comes through as anticipated, Gangl said, adding the project would be paid for with state and federal dollars.
“We don’t know how much funding we’re going to get yet so that is the plan right now, to get it ready and put it on that bid opening schedule but it’s not 100 percent certain that it’ll be bid,” Gangl said.
If everything is a go, construction could take about two to three months, Gangl said.
“It’s not going to be all summer, but it’s going to take most of the summer,” Gangl said.
During construction, traffic controls such as a flagger and pilot car would be set up during the day with possible partial lane closures, opening up to two full lanes in the evening, Gangl said.
The upgrades could alleviate traffic issues for businesses located on Highway 22, including Northern Improvement Co. which operates heavy, large trucks.
“It’s real tough to get out on that road now,” said Tom Kirchen, Northern Improvement area manager and vice president. “If they had decel and an accel lanes that would help out because then your flow of traffic can keep going and it gives the truck time to get up to speed and get back out on the main highway.”
Turning lanes could also help people elude dangerous situations, Kirchen said.
“The problem now is that people are not very courteous so these trucks are just having to take what opportunity they can which is causing an unsafe situation,” Kirchen said.
Stark County Commission Chairman Ken Zander said safety is the county’s primary concern and he feels the project is a step in a positive direction.
“Providing traffic flow from the Interstate (94) north all the way to Killdeer … has got to be our number one priority,” Zander said, adding he would like to see the state include turning lanes at key intersections and some form of traffic control.