Humboldt supervisors approve bridge plans

DAKOTA CITY – The Humboldt County Board of Supervisors approved plans for replacing a bridge spanning Indian Creek on 260th Street southwest of Humboldt Monday.

The bridge, located just east of Kentucky Avenue, was closed in fall 2012 because of its deteriorating condition. Faced with strong local support to reopen the bridge in January, the supervisors approved replacing the bridge.

Landowner Larry Lane asked each supervisor Monday if they were satisfied with the progress of the project.

“It could have been done a little quicker,” said board Chairman Harlan Hansen.

“I know it wasn’t in the five-year plan,” said Supervisor Carl Mattes. “I agree it could have moved faster.”

Supervisor Jerry Haverly said he understood why it has taken so long because it involves summer work. “But I’m also disappointed that we couldn’t address this a little quicker.”

Supervisor Rick Pedersen also said he was disappointed. He felt the work could be done easily using a local contractor.

“I think it could have went a little faster,” said Supervisor Mort Christianson.

Humboldt County Engineer Paul Jacobson said his plans involve the use of three 9 1/2-foot-diameter steel rail tank cars, each 50 feet long.

A bid date has yet to be set because it is unknown when the cars would be available.

“We are on a waiting list for them but so is every oil pumper in North Dakota,” Jacobson said.

If they are available and can be moved to the site, the work might be done in-house, Jacobson said. If the cars do not become available, the board will have to consider other options. Mattes said the county was up against a wall if they wanted the work done by fall.

Jacobson said he could have purchased the cars when they were available but until recently he wasn’t even sure if they would work. A survey of the site had to wait until the ice went out in the third week of April, he said.

“I wish we had had this in the five-year plan five years ago,” Jacobson said. “We didn’t have it in the plan, we didn’t see it coming.”