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North Dakota Highway 91 in Harvey could be the shortest highway in the United States

Published: Oct. 4, 2020 at 4:52 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Roger Hodgson sang about “Taking the long way home.” But in Harvey, Highway 91 puts that song to the test.

“Okay, we’re starting our journey,” said Harvey resident, Kathy Wohl.

Kathy Wohl drives to have coffee with her best friend Mavis almost everyday to chat about business in town.

“I don’t think we have any weekend plans,” said Wohl to her friend.

To get there, she takes Highway 91...as does Mavis.

“It’s hard to keep the speed limit because it’s 25,” said Harvey Business owner, Mavis Edinger.

At only .28 miles long, this highway connects Highway 52 to Highway 3 and to a possible record. That’s something residents get excited about.

“I always think when I get on it, this is the shortest highway,” said Edinger.

Harvey Mayor Rick Eckart said his friend wants to draw more attention to the small icon.

“He’s working on getting some t-shirts made up with the logo on them: 'shortest highway in North Dakota,” said Eckart.

But why is this little stretch of asphalt called a highway?

“We don’t really know that history today but we can sort of guess,” said Scott Zainhofski.

Scott Zainhofski researches highways for the Department of Transportation and said paper records only go back to 1961 and his team was able to guess why the mystery road become a highway.

“From a practical standpoint is it reduces the amount of trucks driving through Harvey,” said Zainhofski..

Back in Harvey, Mayor Eckhart hopes to put up signs officially recognizing Highway 91 has the shortest in the state.

According to a 2014 report from the Iowa Department of Transportation, U.S. Highway 77 travels over the Missouri River into South Dakota at .31 miles long. That means Harvey’s Highway 91 could be the shortest highway in the United States.

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