The North Dakota Department of Transportation (NDDOT) celebrated opening the new Long X Bridge to traffic today. NDDOT Director Bill Panos along with other state and federal officials were in attendance to participate in the ribbon cutting ceremony for the project.
“The state of North Dakota invested $37.4 million to transform the Long X Bridge into a safe and accessible passageway,” said Panos. “US Highway 85 and this bridge are essential to transportation movement in western North Dakota.”
Approximately 4,200 vehicles travel daily over the bridge located on U.S. Highway 85 about 15 miles south of Watford City.
The project included a complete bridge replacement, highway construction and the addition of a wildlife crossing built under U.S. Highway 85 south of the bridge. The new Long X Bridge is a concrete girder bridge and will have four, 12-foot driving lanes with a median in the center. The new bridge will accommodate larger, wider truck loads than was previously capable on the old bridge
The opening of the Long X Bridge represents a collaborative effort between local, state and federal agencies who helped make this project possible.
Currently, the bridge is open to two-lanes of traffic. Contractors will work for the next year to dismantle and remove the old bridge. Motorists will see final construction elements of the project taking place as we work on final phases of the project. The Long X Bridge will be fully open to four lanes of traffic once all work is completed in the summer 2021.
The NDDOT builds and maintains a safe, efficient transportation system consisting of approximately 8,624 miles of roadway and 1,725 bridges. It oversees the development of surface transportation including highways, bridges, transit, pedestrian, and bicycle paths across the state. The NDDOT is an innovative and progressive organization that has a team of employees working hard across the state to carry out the department’s mission to safely move people and goods.