MDU gas line project continues for a third year

Hunter Herbaugh
Sunday, April 4, 2021
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Montana-Dakota Utilities Company launched their third phase of gas main and service line replacements this week, the last step of a multi-year project. The start date of the project was tentatively scheduled as April 1, meaning it should be in full swing fairly soon. It is expected to last about four months.

This project started in 2019 with the aim of replacing MDU’s aging infrastructure. It has been done in stages, with each area of town being done each year. In 2019, the first phase replaced gas and service lines in the Southside neighborhood, then moved to Merrill Avenue and the surrounding area in 2020. This current phase of the project will be taking place primarily in the north residential neighborhoods, both Prospect Heights and Hillcrest, with a small section also being worked on at the intersection of East Allard Street and North Anderson Avenue.

So far, approximately 112,468 feet of main lines and 1,516 feet of service lines have been replaced with another 45,100 feet of main lines and 488 feet of service lines expected to be replaced this year, according to information from MDU.

According to MDU spokesman Mark Hanson, residents in the affected areas can expect much of what people have been told to expect in previous years. Locate flags are currently out to mark the work zones and may be located on or around property. MDU employees may also require access to a residence to manually inspect natural gas facilities and sewer clearances if they cannot be assessed in the field. MDU customers should also expect a short disruption of their natural gas services.

“The entire project is expected to take approximately four months depending on weather conditions and any other unanticipated delays. However, work at specific properties may take only one week. The project will only require a short interruption to your gas service. An MDU representative will contact affected customers to schedule a brief shut off and relight of appliances,” the company said in a statement.

As with previous years, the finishing of the project may be delayed if the weather proves uncooperative. However, Hanson noted that over the last couple of years, there haven’t been any major disruptions to work and they have been able to finish each phase more or less on time.

“I have not heard of any issues... I think they’ve gone pretty well the last two years,” he said.

More information about the project can be found on MDU’s website or questions or concerns can be addressed by calling 800-638-3278.

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