TRAFFIC CHANGES COMING We know it has to be done, but next year's first phase of a two-phase project to upgrade the Broadway viaduct will make things interesting for drivers, to say the least. The project by itself would have a great impact on traffic patterns, but next year's initial phase of work on the Broadway viaduct will be happening at the same time as work continues on the Sixth Street underpass near the Minot Municipal Library. That means two significant north-south routes through town will be diverting traffic elsewhere. The work on both projects is necessary, of course, and so dealing with lengthy traffic changes comes with the territory. And we certainly don't want either project delayed, considering the Sixth Street project has already been put off for a number of years. We're just saying that when the Broadway project starts, city officials will be encouraging drivers to use alternate routes, while already encouraging drivers to find alternate routes instead of using Sixth Street. It will be intersting, if nothing else.
FAIR SAFETY Pedestrian safety seems to be a never-ending concern at the North Dakota State Fair, and with good reason. Again this year, a pedestrian crossing East Burdick Expressway was struck by a vehicle and injured. The driver of the vehicle faces a felony charge of DUI and failing to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk. The state, the city and the North Dakota State Fair have worked hard for years to make the area around the fairground safer during the 9-day event, adding flashing signs and raising awareness of pedestrians in the area. Yet it seems accidents between vehicles and pedestrian continue to happen.?Granted, you can't protect pedestrians from someone allegedly driving while intoxicated, but it's frustrating that accidents continue to happen. No doubt there will continue to be discussion of ways to make the area even safer for pedestrians, and that's a good thing. We know it's wishful thinking, but we drivers should simply follow basic rules of the road when encountering the State Fairgrounds during the event and every other day in Minot, too.