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Dilworth road project underway on thoroughfare in growing east side

Rural type street with ditch to transform into urban road

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Seventh Street Northeast in Dilworth is being reconstructed with a new road surface, utility work and an extension of the shared-use pathway along the east side of the street. This is a view looking south from Fourth Avenue.
Barry Amundson / The Forum
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Editor's note: This is the eighth in a series of reports on road and other infrastructure projects under way this summer in the metro and across the area. This includes information about detours and lane closures.

DILWORTH, Minn. — A street that is a major connection to the growing number of new neighborhoods on the east side of Dilworth is undergoing a makeover this summer.

Seventh Street Northeast, which was a rural road with a ditch on the east side and no shoulders, is being reconstructed for about a mile with the ditch being filled in and curb and gutter being installed.

The north-south street connects on the south side with U.S. Highway 10, which runs through Dilworth.

The $5.4-million street project, which keeps the roadway a two-lane street, will not only improve safety but also be more visually appealing, said City Administrator Peyton Mastera.

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The effort includes adding about a mile of shared-use pathway for pedestrians and bicyclists, improving drainage with stormwater improvements, and some minor watermain and sanitary sewer work.

The downside, of course, is the street is closed to traffic except for the major intersection with Fourth Avenue North that allows access to the many new housing developments on the east side of the street.

Mastera said work has been ongoing for about a month with the old roadway mostly removed, utility work underway and some of ditch filled in so far.

On the city's website, where updates are posted, it states there are some temporary road accesses. Eric Medbery with Moore Engineering is handling any concerns, and he can be reached at 701-288-1615.

Sellin Brothers is the main contractor.

The project, which received a state grant of $1.25 million, is also being special assessed. The anticipated assessment per home is estimated at about $3,000, payable over 20 years.

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This view looking north shows work on Seventh Street Northeast, a major collector road for many new neighborhoods in the eastern part of Dilworth. The road is closed to traffic, although Fourth Avenue is open for traffic crossing into the neighborhoods on the east side of the road.
Barry Amundson / The Forum

The growing community isn't ignoring the older part of the city this summer, according to Mastera.

He called it the "historical part of town."

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In what's being called a Northside Improvement Project, about 13 blocks are undergoing a mill and overlay with a new layer of asphalt in an area north of U.S. Highway 10 and south of Fourth Avenue and between Fourth Street Northeast and Fifth Street Northwest.

It's kind of routine maintenance, Mastera said, although a few alleys are being reconstructed, and disability ramps on sidewalk corners are being installed.

He estimated the repaving of the roadways in the $2.9-million project will likely start in a few weeks.

Mastera said an interesting part of the project is the contract includes improvements to Birch Tree Park along Fifth Street Northwest and Fourth Avenue.

A new basketball court is being installed, as well as walking paths. A flashing crosswalk is also being installed in the area.

As for any traffic concerns, residents can drive on the roadways when the old asphalt is milled off. When contractor Northern Improvement Co. installs the layer of new asphalt, there will be no traffic allowed but likely only for a few hours in most instances, according to the city website.

Anticipated special assessments are $4,184 for 50 feet of frontage and $8,639 for a 100-foot frontage to be paid off over 10 years.

Moorhead

11th Street underpass: Although the project is a few years away, residents can learn more about the tentative design for the major railroad underpass project on 11th Street in a special meeting on Tuesday, June 28, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Hjemkomst Center, 202 First Ave. N.

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There will be no formal presentation, but residents, businesses and others can learn more about the project that could cost upwards of $100 million.

The event is hosted by the Minnesota Department of Transportation, which is taking the lead on the project in funding and in a partnership with the city.

The project will involve two underpasses on 11th Street which will enable motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians to travel under the rail lines that are known for blocking traffic, often for long periods of time.

Also at the meeting, residents can learn about the future reconstruction of Highway 75 or Eighth Street South from 24th Avenue near Interstate 94 to Main Avenue.

Residents can submit comments and ask questions virtually to MnDOT at mndot.gov/d4/projects/moorhead11thstunderpass.

West Fargo

Center Street: The underpass will close Wednesday, June 22, through Friday, June 24, for ongoing work that is part of the regional sanitary sewer rehabilitation project.

West Fargo ships its sanitary sewage to the Fargo plant.

Access to businesses in the area north of Main Avenue and First Street near the underpass will remain open, but alternate routes may be set up during the closure. Other traffic will be detoured to Ninth Street Northeast east of the closure or Ninth Street Northwest west of the closure.

The rehabilitation project is the highest priority in the West Fargo capital improvement plan, as it's critical for the city to reduce the risk of system failure and to improve the system's ability for collection and to carry the wastewater to Fargo's plant for treatment.

The city's continued growth is causing the need for ongoing efforts to the sanitary sewer system.

There are no special assessments associated with the project, but the work is funded through the city's sales tax fund and sewer utility rates. Those two funding sources cover the full operation of the sewer utilities, including future repair and rehabilitation projects.

Fargo

21st Avenue South: The avenue is currently closed between 16th Street and 17th Street as part of the 21st Avenue South improvement project. As part of this work, the I-94 pedestrian bridge is also closed.

Main Avenue: Beginning Monday, June 20, eastbound Main Avenue traffic will be shifted into the center turn lanes at Broadway in downtown Fargo. Crews will be installing new private underground utility connections, and the lane closure is expected to be in place for two weeks.

13th Avenue South: Work is continuing on replacing concrete slabs to prolong the road surface on 13th Avenue South near Interstate 29. It's a congested area during this construction.

Work shifted this past Wednesday to the east from the 36th Street area to 34th Street. The contractor in this second year of work on 13th Avenue concrete rehabilitation is working from west to east. Last year, they were doing more work in the 25th Street area. Residents are urged to find alternate routes if possible.

An almost 50-year veteran of the newspaper business, Amundson has worked for The Forum and Forum News Service for 15 years. He started as a sport reporter in Minnesota. He is currently the city and night reporter for The Forum. bamundson@forumcomm.com 701-451-5665
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