The repairs were more extensive than originally thought and the street was closed for a longer period than expected, but 16th Street Southwest is expected to be open for traffic again today.
That was the word late Wednesday from Jason Sorenson, project engineer with the Minot Public Works Department.
According to Sorenson, the 16th Street troubles began late last week when it was noticed that a sinkhole had begun to develop. A portion of the street was closed to traffic while work was under way. The problem was very near where a sewer collapse occurred following the flood last summer.
Kim Fundingsland/MDN • This view of 16th Street Southwest taken Wednesday shows an area of repair. The street was expected to be open to traffic today.
"It was a gaping hole after the flood. We thought we got all the problems fixed, but then the sinkhole developed," said Sorenson. "We hired Kemper Construction to dig and investigate."
Excavation revealed that the sewer main at that location had collapsed, resulting in more work than initially anticipated. About 75 feet of sewer main had to be replaced.
"It is always scary when you have sinkholes in the street," said Sorenson. "You never know what you are going to find when you get down there."
On Wednesday, Bechtold Paving was putting the finishing touches on new asphalt in the portion of 16th Street where the sewer collapsed, as well as a few other places where the roadway was in need of improvement. By late afternoon asphalt had been applied and equipment had been removed from the site. City crews were detailed to sweep the area while the new asphalt was curing.
Several sinkholes within the city were in need of repair following last year's flood. Sorenson said he hopes the 16th Street project is the last one that needs fixing.
"There's no more that we know of. We did have a lot of sinkholes right after the flood," said Sorenson. "This was kind of a new one that popped up. We're hoping no more spring up."