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Kenmare bridge being replaced this summer

A bridge that has needed an upgrade for a while is scheduled to be removed and rebuilt this summer just west of the city of Kenmare.

3/29/16 (Tue)

Construction begins in July . . . This bridge, just west of Kenmare on Ward County Road 2, is set for replacement this summer. It is expected to begin in July. Cars and light trucks will use a temporary access north of the current bridge but heavy trucks and farm machinery will be detoured to N.D. Highway 50.

By Marvin Baker

A bridge that has needed an upgrade for a while is scheduled to be removed and rebuilt this summer just west of the city of Kenmare.

The bridge, which is straddled between two sets of railroad tracks on the west edge of Sixth Street, will be removed starting sometime after July 1 with construction expected to be completed by Oct. 15, according to assistant Ward County engineer Travis Schmit.

“The proposed structure will have a temporary access on the north side that will be a single lane with traffic taking turns to cross the temporary structure during the course of the project,” Schmit said. “The temporary crossing will only be allowed for cars and emergency services.”

The temporary access will be much like Kenmare-area residents experienced last year while sections of Sixth Street were being built.

As a result, Schmit urges people to be patient for the approximate three months until the construction is wrapped up.

All large trucks and farm equipment, according to Schmit, will have to take the same detour route that was used for the Ward County Road 2 reconstruction project last year.

That detour included a jog down to N.D. Highway 50 and west or a trip to Bowbells on U.S. Highway 52 and N.D. Highway 5, then south on N.D. Highway 8.

The bridge replacement, which is estimated to cost $1.5 million, was part of the long-term reconstruction plan of the county road that also doubles as Kenmare’s Sixth Street.

People living and working west of Kenmare should make the appropriate plans if they intend to move grain or machinery, according to Schmit, as the detour will be in effect through most of the 2016 harvest season.

Despite the additional mileage, the detours are necessary for the integrity of the temporary access which is only being built to handle the weight of light vehicles.

It is unclear at this time if the construction will have any impact on the Canadian Pacific Railway as the tracks are on either side of the bridge replacement project.

“It will be the first bridge as you head west out of Kenmare,” Schmit said. “Remember the temporary access will be a single lane and we’ll have to take turns crossing.” ... Read EVERY WORD on EVERY PAGE of The Kenmare News by subscribing--online or in print!