LongX Road Slide Area Under Repair: $2M Project to Move Road 500 Feet South
Friday, June 3, 2022A slide area that's causing damage to LongX Road in McKenzie County is getting what county highway managers hope is a permanent fix this summer.
The area in question is about 4 1/2 miles east of Highway 85 on the road that roughly parallels the Little Missouri River. County Road Superintendent Layton Northrop said a longtime employee told him the slide started causing problems with the road 30 years ago, and there have been several previous projects to repair it.
Click here to listen to Northrop's comments.
Northrop said county employees monitor the road daily because recent heavy rain has increased movement in the slide area.
"I was just talking to my road foreman who's doing that project down there. In the last month, it (the road) has dropped a minimum of four feet, so it is moving," Northrop said.
County Engineering Director Curt Huus estimates the cost of labor and materials to complete the realignment, moving the road 500 feet south of its current location, will cost the county about $2 million.
"This is pretty major," Huus said. "They're cutting through some pretty good hills. It's not a simple project."
Because the road is unstable, McKenzie County has placed an 8-ton per axle, 80,000-pound weight restriction on the road, and posted a 10 mph speed limit in the marked slide area. Northrop said the repair is important because the LongX Road is a major east-west corridor for the oil industry.
"It probably safe to say that there's 100 trucks that go down that road every day, and big oil trucks, heavy oil trucks, and that's the reason that we have to restrict that road is because the heavy trucks going across there are not helping the situation at all," Northrop said.
Huus said construction on the project began about a month ago, and the county expects the new alignment to be completed around August or September.
Click here, here, here and here to see pictures of the slide and damage to the road.