Minot achieves metro planning status

The Minot area has officially achieved status as a Metropolitan Planning Organization, according to the City of Minot. 

The city was notified last week of the Census Bureau determination that the Minot area has exceeded 50,000 residents. The area now has a population of 50,925 residents, making it the fourth MPO in the state. A new MPO has not been created in the state for almost 50 years, the city engineering office reported.

MPO status has been an economic goal for the City of Minot as it gives Minot higher status with commerce and industry. It also entitles the community to federal planning dollars to help offset the cost of planning associated with the designation.

Since 2008, the City of Minot’s population has been expanding due to energy and agriculture growth. The 2020 Census for the city of Minot showed 48,377 residents.

Until Census Bureau maps are released, the city will not know the exact boundaries of the MPO area. It is likely that Burlington and Surrey will be included in the MPO area since the rural subdivisions surrounding Minot make a continuous urbanized area, according to the city.

The Minot City Council is scheduled to discuss the city’s next actions at its regular council meeting Tuesday. In the coming months, several meetings are expected to be scheduled with Ward County and NDDOT staff regarding setting up the governing structure of the MPO.

A rough timeline calls for establishing an MPO Technical Advisory Committee to advise the policy board, creating a policy board and the MPO boundaries, and entering into agreement with the governor to establish the MPO, which needs to happen within 11 months.

Once established, the MPO will develop a Metropolitan Transportation Plan and a Transportation Improvement Program. All federal aid road projects will have to be approved by the MPO before being submitted to the NDDOT for programming. In addition, the transit department will see changes to its programming and funding.


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