A street that was on the front line of early flood protection measures taken by the city in 2011, then covered by a massive dike, is getting a new look.
Work crews have been installing a new guardrail in recent days between Railway Avenue and the Souris River.
The roadway is known as Fourth Avenue on the west side of north Broadway, and Railway Avenue on the east side. It is one of the low points along the Souris River. As such, portions of it were initially sandbagged prior to the 2011 flood. Then Hesco barriers were placed along the avenue. Finally, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers hastily erected the most massive section of dike ever placed in the city.
A new guardrail is being installed along Railway Avenue in Minot. The old guardrail was damaged during flood protection work in 2011. In the background is the Third Street Viaduct.
The dike successfully kept flood water from reaching numerous homes in northeast Minot. However, several residences along Railway Avenue sustained damage due to the emergency diking. So, too, did the chain link fence and guardrail along the river.
"About 500 feet of it was damaged because of levee work," said Dan Jonasson, Minot public works director. "Crews had to remove the old stuff and put all new posts in. There's still some work to be done there."
According to Jonasson, additional work includes replacing a chain link fence that runs between the guardrail and the river.
Some homes along Railway Avenue have been proposed for voluntary acquisition by buyouts included in Phase I of the flood recovery plan adopted by the Minot City Council. The area has been designated for protection by a flood wall, not a dike, meaning Railway Avenue will remain in use and future flood protection measures should not result in damage to the new guardrail or fencing.
The project on Railway Avenue is one of several under way as the city continues to recover from the 2011 flood.
"Railway will receive some asphalt patching under federal aid dollars," explained Jonasson. "There are places all over town where patching will occur. We had damage on haul routes during the 2011 flood and there were levees on roads from one end of Burdick to the other, on 16th Street and multiple streets."
The Victory Pedestrian Bridge, located immediately east of Home Sweet Home, was twisted from its moorings when a rush of flood water entered the city in 2011. It has remained closed since that time and its future is in doubt. However, the fate of the pedestrian bridge may be determined next month when a crane is scheduled to lift the bridge onto land south of the river. At that time a structural consultant is expected to make a recommendation as to whether or not the bridge can be repaired and returned to use, or whether it would need to be replaced.