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West Ridge Drive getting overhaul

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West Ridge Drive, in West Dickinson, was privately constructed for the Roers Dvelopment (Brandon L. Summers / The Dickinson Press)

West Ridge Drive is getting a needed overhaul.

The road, constructed in 2013 for the West Dickinson Roers Development and later accepted by the city, provides access to Family Fare Supermarket and Menards.

Highlands Engineering in Dickinson has been hired to look at different options for the road.

There have been problems with West Ridge from the outset, Public Works Director Gary Zuroff said.

"As soon as we accepted it, we seemed to be having issues," he said. "There were questions on the compaction done by the contractor."

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Six years is a short time for a road to need replacement, Zuroff confirmed.

"There are severe settlement issues and voids under the concrete," he said. "Over the last few years, we've been repairing and replacing sections that were the worst."

These problems compromise the integrity of the road.

"When you build a street you need the correct soils and compaction," Zuroff said. "This is a concrete street and underneath the concrete the materials have settled. That really puts stress on the concrete because there's no base underneath some of those sections."

This can cause problems for drivers.

"You can see settlement issues on some of the infrastructure out there, and then you can see deterioriation of the concrete itself," Zuroff said. "Crackling, spalling."

A geotechnical evaluation report was completed by Braun Intertec Corporation of Dickinson in 2016.

The report looked at West Ridge, Roughrider Boulevard and Legend Drive, about 7,700 linear feet of road, and found that materials under the concrete are still settling.

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More than 50 voids were detected along West Ridge.

According to the report, the settlement is "probably caused by poor compaction of the backfill, and the weight of the overlying soil has caused the settlement to continue."

Braun estimated the cost to repair the roads at $4.5 million.

Highlands is looking at multiple solutions to remedy the problems.

"We could do foam injections just under the concrete, or deep injections to bring the soils up to improve the base under the concrete," Zuroff said. "Some areas might be better effectively repaired with reconstruction."

He added, "It might be a combination of injection and replacement."

Some minor work might be done this fall if some areas need to be fixed right away.

"I would say, depending on the options, we'll do a majority of it next year," Zuroff said. "Unless we can come up with some quick solutions this fall."

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