Continued construction

Engineers are designing a new arterial route for south Minot that could help take pressure off traffic on South Broadway.

The City of Minot plans to construct 37th Avenue Southeast as a paved roadway with two 12-foot lanes and an additional center turn lane, curb and gutter. Along with roadway construction, the project includes improvements to storm sewers, storm water detention facilities, water main, lighting and construction of a shared-use path for pedestrians and bikers. The shared-used path will link with existing path on 37th Avenue to the west, tying into the path on 16th Street Southwest.

The 37th Avenue project area runs for about a mile between South Broadway and 13th Street Southeast, connecting to improvements being made in the 13th Street area this year.

City engineer Lance Meyer said the improvements together at 13th Street and 37th Avenue should help take traffic pressure off South Broadway by serving as a major arterial street for southeast Minot. The avenue currently is a rural, gravelled roadway with deficiencies that include substandard roadway geometry, steep dtich slopes, narrow driving lanes and traffic congestion near the Broadway intersection. Despite the road problems, development already is occurring with apartments and other construction.

Meyer said further development is inevitable. Already, Minot Country Club is relocating to the area, and a housing development will be built next to that golf course. Increased development requires that the city upgrade the roadway for safety and efficiency. Meyer said improvements to 37th Avenue have been on the drawing board since 2009.

Meyer said feedback at a public input meeting Tuesday in City Hall indicated that residents support the project.

“They are excited because they want to see a better direct route to Walmart and some of those areas. It will be a nice road to Broadway and the 2 & 52 Bypass. Once both roads are completed, it will really help the traffic flow,” he said of the 13th Street and 37th Avenue improvements.

Nick West, project manager with Kadrmas, Lee and Jackson, said the company plans to complete design this winter to allow for bid letting in February.

Construction will happen in 2014. West said a portion of the avenue will be closed during construction, while other portions will have phased construction that will continue to allow for traffic. There will be access to all properties along the route at all times, though, he said.

Meyer said the street will be constructed as a concrete section rather than asphalt.

“It’s a larger upfront cost, but in the long run the maintenance is less,” he said.