City responds to road construction congestion

The City of Minot has adjusted signals and intends to alter a detour to ease temporary traffic congestion on 16th Street Southwest.

Underground work and roadway repairs at the 16th Street underpass this week have limited traffic to one lane in each direction, causing vehicles to back up considerably. City traffic engineer Stephanie Frizzo said southbound traffic Tuesday afternoon was found to have backed up from the Burdick Expressway intersection to Second Avenue near Arrowhead Shopping Center.

To rectify the situation, the city has extended the green time of the signal at Burdick for north and south traffic on 16th Street. Frizzo said additional signal adjustments will be made if excessive congestion remains a concern.

The city also has directed contractors on the Sixth Street Underpass project to relocate an existing detour that takes traffic south on 16th Street to make a left onto Burdick. With 16th Street down to one lane, motorists in the southbound lane waiting to turn left have been severely backing up traffic behind them.

The existing work on the east side of 16th Street is to finish this week. Work then will shift to the west side of the street, and traffic will continue with one lane in each direction for the next two weeks, Frizzo said.

The 16th Street construction is part of a larger, citywide repair project that has included work on traffic signals, street lighting and roads this year.

The work on 16th Street comes at a time when other city arterial streets also are undergoing construction that needs to get done before cold weather arrives.

In addition to detours on Sixth Street due to underpass work, an area of Third Street in downtown Minot, just south of the bridge, has been getting new concrete. Traffic is reduced to one lane serving northbound vehicles. Southbound traffic has been detoured. Frizzo said the project is using a concrete that sets up fast, so the road should be open again on Friday.

Repaving also continues on the U.S. Highway 83 Bypass and on U.S. Highway 2 through Minot. The North Dakota Department of Transportation’s online travel report indicates no traffic delays except on Highway 2 ramps when construction reaches those points. However, motorists will run into areas of single-lane traffic in each direction and reduced speeds. Both projects are to be completed by mid-October.