Transportation causes traffic and safety concerns in the North Dakota oil field

Several road construction projects are currently in planning stages or already underway to address problems with traffic and safety in and around the North Dakota oil field. The drilling and fracking processes require a significant amount of resources, including equipment and water, which must be transported to well locations by truck. This creates increased traffic, pollution, and risk of accidents in the areas surrounding oil field development. As the Bakken continues to grow at a record-breaking pace, North Dakota officials are working to increase infrastructure to support the booming industry. For example, phase one of a project to increase U.S. Highway 85 from two to four lanes is complete, and the new stretch between Watford City and Alexander is now open. Phase two is currently underway and contracts have been awarded for phase three. Not everyone in the state feels positively about all of the construction going on. In Williston, residents have complained that a construction project is producing unreasonable amounts of noise and air pollution. Sixty-four residents living near construction at the intersection of Highway 2 and 11th Street signed a petition asking the Williston City Commission, Williams County Commission, and North Dakota Department of Transportation to conduct more studies on noise and air pollution and mitigate these negative effects of road construction.