Mandan bike lanes part of road project discussion

Mandan bike lanes
Mandan bike lanes(KFYR-TV)
Published: Apr. 8, 2021 at 8:31 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - A road project proposed for Highway 1806 from Heart River to Main Street fostered debate on bike lanes in Mandan.

Across the nation, cycling picked up during the pandemic, and bike shops are now preparing for a busier spring and summer season.

“We just have a huge demand for bikes right now, and we are going to see that trend the rest of the year,” said Collin Kemmesat, Operations Overseer at 701 Cycle and Sport.

However, the lack of trails or bike lanes is the most reported barrier to biking in North Dakota according to a 2020 NDDOT survey.

“Commuting is picking up this time of year, we see a lot of people wanting to get out, get active with the new year and kind of start fresh,” added Kemmesat.

Those taking to the roads might hope bike lanes will cycle into Mandan, but Mandan commissioners curbed the idea.

“The bikers pretty much take over the roadway as it is, and if you cross the bridge to the south there’s a nice million-dollar bike path heading to Fort Lincoln. The bikers choose not to use that, they ride in the middle of the highway,” Mandan mayor Tim Helbling said at the Mandan city commission meeting Tuesday.

The Highway 1806 project was proposed to include room for bike lanes among other reconstruction items like pedestrian crossings and pavement. After discussion at the city commission meeting, Mandan commissioners sent a recommendation to NDDOT to continue with the project but to keep the build at four lanes without adjustment for a bike lane.

NDDOT has the final say when moving into the final design phase of this project.

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