Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Wow, This Is Huge: Four-Lane Between Watford City and Williston ...

.... but this is hard to believe: a new four-lane bridge across the Missouri just south of Williston.

Actually it's going to be a five-lane, not a four-lane highway between Watford City and Williston. Think Odessa and Midland. The fifth lane will be the sporty lane. [See comment below regarding growth of Watford City over new decade:]

For the past two years I wondered when the bridge issue would be addressed. The existing two-lane bridge would only become a choke point if the highway was widened to four lanes on both ends.

So, here it is in The Bismarck Tribune.

Some data points:
  • key phrase: extraordinary expense and scope of new right-of-way that will be needed
  • key phrase: extraordinary expense due to new bridge
  • will be done in phases
  • first phase: 25 miles, Watford City to Alexander (relatively easy by comparison to everything else)
  • second phase: north of Alexander to "four-mile corner" west of Williston (north of the bridge); also about 25 miles
  • second phase construction: to begin in summer of 2014
  • existing bridge will serve while the new one is under construction (either to the west or east)
  • Williston water plant sits on the east side of the existing bridge, on the north side
  • the highway: two, 12-foot lanes running each direction with a continuous left-turn lane running down the middle
  • 8-foot wide shoulders
  • separate project: a bypass around the city of Alexander; route not yet selected
One word: wow! Talk about all the employment opportunities over the next two or three years in the area.



    60 rigs in McKenzie County through 2016.
    50 rigs in McK County through 2025.

    At least 14,000 oil workers through 2025.
    At least 20,000 people through 2025.

    Watford City mayor does not believe the 20,000 number. With retail / service / government growth, it is possible there could be 28,000 jobs in McKenzie County in 8-10 years, making the number of residents much higher.

    WC schools have grown by > 20% just since the doors opened this fall.

    1. I will add the link to the stand-alone post so it's easier for folks to access. Thank you for taking time to write. I really appreciate it.