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Council favors option two for road work on N.D. 3

By Staff | Dec 26, 2008

The Rugby City Council voted 3-2 at a special meeting last week to go ahead with one of two options to complete road repairs along much of N.D. Highway 3 within the city limits and complete concrete repairs, where needed, to the highway underpass.

The maintenance project is estimated to cost $560,000 and would be coordinated through the North Dakota Department of Transportation (DOT). The city’s share would be 10 percent, or $56,000. Eighty percent would be federally funded and 10 percent would be paid by the state.

Project could be done next year

Initially, the repairs were scheduled for 2010, but the project may be moved up to 2009, tied to planned road work on a 22-mile stretch of N.D. 3 north to the junction of N.D. 66, according to Wayde Swenson, Department of Transportation district engineer. That hinges on whether a federal economic stimulus package is approved by lawmakers early next year.

The planned work includes an overlay from the junction of U.S. Highway 2 north to 4th St. S.W. as well as milling and an overlay of asphalt sections from 4th S.W. north to the city limits, with some possible subcuts; and replacement of concrete panels at the base of the underpass. Some cracks could be stitched to avoid total replacement of panels, Swenson said.

Council members Jim Hoffert, Dave Bednarz and Bruce Rheault favored that option, while councilmen Terry Wentz and Gerry Jacobson voted no, preferring a different option that would include a future rebuilding of a segment of the highway between 4th St. S.W. and First St. N.W., as early as 2013. Three council members, Monte Schneibel, Bill Hartl and Steve Brossart, were unable to attend the Dec. 23 special meeting.

Option two was essentially the same as the first, with one key difference. Instead of a mill and overlay and some concrete work on the highway between 4th S.W and 1st N.W., the DOT would schedule a complete reconstruction there, including new sidewalks, lighting, and improved storm sewer drainage. However, that part of the option would likely not be put on the construction schedule until 2013 at the earliest, Swenson said.

That rebuild would cost about $1.8 million, and the city would cover about $221,000.

At the meeting, the council held a conference call with Swenson to discuss in more detail both options. Swenson said it’s a possibility the city’s share of the costs could be waived if the stimulus package is approved. The entire project could be federally funded.

The DOT will begin making engineering plans and specifications for the repairs with bids likely let in March or April.

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