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Dickinson area will be host to major construction throughout summer

Summertime in North Dakota kicks off another major season--construction. Larry Gangl, North Dakota Department of Transportation Dickinson District engineer, said the district's construction lineup of about 38 projects for this year is the biggest...

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Traffic begins congesting as it enters a construction zone near 12th Street West along Third Avenue West on Tuesday evening. (Dustin Monke / The Dickinson Press)

Summertime in North Dakota kicks off another major season-construction.

Larry Gangl, North Dakota Department of Transportation Dickinson District engineer, said the district's construction lineup of about 38 projects for this year is the biggest it's ever had, with a total dollar value of nearly $200 million.

Gangl said the district spans from the state borders to the west and south to around Hebron in the east and Grassy Butte in the north. Within that area, three projects will are taking place in and around Dickinson.

"We have the Dickinson bypass, which is the final phase of that," Gangl said, referring to the town's truck bypass route off Interstate 94 Exit 56. "We finished up the interchange last year and this year we're going to do the final phase. We also have the State Avenue project-the overpass-and the Highway 22 and I-94 turn lanes, which is an intersection improvement there."

Both the bypass and State Avenue bridge should be completed this fall, he said, and work just began this week on the intersection upgrade.

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Gangl said, because it's part of a state highway, NDDOT is overseeing the construction on the busy stretch of Third Avenue West from 12th Street West to 15th Street West. The ongoing work started on Monday and is the second part of the project, which began last year with the installation of signal lights.

The construction of the turning lanes, Gangl said, is intended to "allow for freer flow of traffic" when the road gets busy.

"Cars will stack up there, so this will help alleviate that," he said.

Beyond the immediate Dickinson area, Gangl said the district is overseeing paving on I-94 east of Medora, as well as concrete replacement to the west of the city.

NDDOT is also working on the Killdeer bypass, constructing a new structure to span the Knife River near Beulah and is conducting paving along most of the distance of Highway 85 between Belfield and Bowman, among several other projects.

 

Dickinson approaches busy infrastructure season

The city of Dickinson is also facing a busy summer of infrastructure construction.

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City engineer Craig Kubas said Dickinson has "an awful lot" of Capital Improvement Plan projects that have been recently bid and are in pre-construction stages.

At the June 20 City Commission meeting, Kubas ran through 16 different projects carrying a total price tag of more than $45.3 million. However, more than $27.6 million of that sum is tied to the State Avenue bridge project, for which all but about $1.8 million is funded by the NDDOT.

"We have a busy year," Kubas said. "In dollars, we went from a lot of $10 million jobs in the past now to $1 million jobs, but we still have plenty of them and a lot of contracts to deal with. It'll be a busy year for the Capital Improvement Program."

Kubas said this week that the work schedule for most of the projects is going to "pick up considerably" after the Fourth of July holiday.

Besides the State Avenue overpass, the city is looking to the installation of the 40th Street watermain, the completion of the first phase of the Crooked Crane Trail, the renovation of Museum Drive and the completion of two lift stations for the city water system.

Former City Commission President Gene Jackson noted at the commission meeting, the last of his tenure as president, that many of the summer's projects are the end result of work that began on a larger scale about five years ago to address oil boom population growth.

"We're not finished in Dickinson, but we've got good working systems now," Jackson said. "Most of it is because of our growth due to oil impact, but I think our neighbors, who make up our citizens, should really feel good about what kinds of systems we have in Dickinson right now. These projects this summer should really put a cap on it."

Related Topics: DICKINSON
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