Monday, October 22, 2012

New airport in Dakota oil country

OK, so it's not going to look exactly like the airport in the photo, but the effects of the Bakken boom are inching closer to my homestead.

Dirt has started to move on a new $12 million airport in Bowman, ND. Bowman is south of the Bakken proper, but has long been an oil town, forming a sort of triad with Buffalo, SD and Baker, MT (the Red River formation underlies this area.) The existing airport west of town already had the best facilities of any of the small-town airports on either side of the state line, in no small part because of oil-related private aviation. It is about to get better with the building of the new and expanded airport east of town.

While there are no plans for commercial service to the airport, the report notes that it is expected to act as a "pressure release valve for other Oil Patch airports." Busy BNSF rail service comes through Bowman, but an even greater importance of Bowman is that it is at the crossroads of the east-west highway US 12 and the north-south corridor of US 85, so a lot of road traffic comes through it as well. The airport will expand Bowman's role as an important transportation hub in the region.

Yet another example of the good things that can accompany traditional energy development.

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