Gov. Jack Dalrymple and the North Dakota Department of Transportation today announced plans to extend during the 2012 construction season existing passing lanes on U.S. Highway 85, between Watford City and Williston. Continuing work on U.S. 85, along with the development of an additional environmental document, is part of the state's plan to convert the highway into an undivided, four-lane highway.
The state Department of Transportation also is working to complete an environmental document which is required by the Federal Highway Administration to build a new, U.S. Highway 85 bridge over the Little Missouri River, about 14 miles south of Watford City.
"The Department of Transportation will keep to an aggressive timeline again this year for road improvement projects in western North Dakota and throughout the state," Governor Dalrymple said. "The state is providing unprecedented funding for infrastructure improvements and we are committed to meeting the demands that come with rapid growth."
"The Transportation Department continues to monitor traffic flows and is working with the Upper Great Plains Transportation Institute to forecast traffic patterns in the state's oil and gas counties," Transportation Department Director Francis Ziegler said.
Other roadwork scheduled this year in western North Dakota includes:
Rebuilding and additional road repairs to U.S. Highway 2 north of Williston to the U.S. Highway 85 junction and east of Ray.
Widening and adding passing and turning lanes to ND Highway 23, east of New Town to ND 37.
Expanding ND Highway 22 north of Dickinson to the county line.
Adding turn lanes and passing lanes to ND Highway 22, 12 miles north of Killdeer to Lost Bridge.
Widening and adding passing and turning lanes to ND Highway 22, from ND 73 to ND 23.
Developing Williston's temporary and permanent truck-reliever routes.
Rebuilding U.S. Highway 85 through Alexander and continuing environmental work for truck bypass.
Future projects under consideration include building additional truck-reliever routes for the cities of Dickinson, New Town and Watford City.