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Contractors Focus on Homes in 2014

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It's been a busy year for construction in Dickinson. But as the New Year approaches, contractors are already looking forward to the challenge of building even more apartments, homes and businesses in 2014.

Through sun, rain and snow, builders in Dickinson have been working around the clock.

"As a resident, you're seeing your city transformed," says Dickinson Community director Ed Courton.

What used to be the rural outskirts of the city are now filled with new homes.

"Dickinson Hills, West Ridge, Pine Crest are large community developments on the west side of the city. With that, we should have a significant number of commercial development coming in," says Courton.

But surprisingly, 2012 was a busier year for construction than 2013.

"We are roughly about 40% down building permits issuance from last year. Some of our meetings last year were five to six hours, we had 22 to 25 items on the agenda," says Courton.

Most of those projects are close to completion. Which means by next spring, Dickinson will have plenty of new retail and housing options.

"Even though it's costing us a lot of money, it's going to be paid for in the end and we're going to have probably 40,000 I would think in 5 years," says Realtor and City Commissioner Shirley Dukart.

Before the city can reach that mark, officials still need to work on the housing problem.

"Everything always feeds to housing. Because it doesn't matter if you're a build a retail center, they still have to have employees. So it really doesn't matter if you're drilling for oil or selling tires it's still a staffing issue for most people up here," says Brian Bochman, Meyer Real Estate Group.

Builders say they're optimistic that 2014 will bring even more construction opportunities.

"I think 2013 was a good year, I think 2014 is going to be a really, really busy year. Because the city has finally been able to turn everybody loose with their capital improvement plan and doing all the project they're doing with infrastructure and everything. I think 2014 is going to be a pretty wild year," says Bochman.

Bochman and Meyer Real Estate are currently working on both residential and commercial projects that they'll finish next year, and then they'll get started on new ones.

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