Warm Weather Helps Local Construction Get a Head Start

With a warmer than usual Fargo February, will the orange cones come back early?

FARGO, N.D. — For some, the construction season is never over.

A warmer than normal February means more progress on new buildings.

But will road construction make an early return?

Fargo city engineers say even though you could go outside without a jacket, the underground frost will prevent early road construction.

But some house builders said even if it’s below zero, they’d still be working through the winter.

The warm weather caused more wet mud to come up around the homes, but Travis Knowler said it’s not a problem for their construction projects.

“Only thing we’re fighting now is the mud,” said SAV construction worker Travis Knowler. “It’s hard on the guys, but better than the cold, you know?”

Nate Anderson, a broker with Thomsen Homes, said the market for new houses doesn’t wait until summer.

“We have a lot of crews in the field right now and they’re staying real busy,” said Anderson. “The nice weather certainly helps. Demand for housing right now is just as strong as it was last year. It’s nice to get a head start on some of those homes.”

Even with the warmer weather, we still have time before road construction starts up again.

“Frost depths are too deep to really make it productive for a contractor to be doing the work,” said City of Fargo division engineer Tom Knakmuhs. “The gravel base underneath a roadway is currently frozen. Spring load restrictions go on the roadway so that heavy loads don’t damage the road.”

Because of these load restrictions, Knakmuhs said none of the city’s construction projects will start in February.

But for home builders, this warm-up certainly beats the blistering wind chills.

“In the winter time, we got to warm up quite often,” said Knowler. “Being all bundled up, it’s kind of hard to move around when you’re all bundled up.”

Knakmuhs said we may start seeing some orange cones along 32nd Ave starting in March, but again, it’s all weather dependent.

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