You might have noticed quite a bit of activity in downtown Mandan. We spoke to city administrators to find out what all the buzz is about.
After the pandemic, the city of Mandan is starting to get back into its groove. You might have noticed Dykshoorn Park looks a little different.
“We’re adding some shade sails in front of the bandshell to protect people from the sun, and we’re also doing some really nicer sitting areas where we’ll have some gas fire pits for people to gather. We’ll do some fencing in the area, that will help with all the events that occur,” said Jim Neubauer, the Mandan city administrator.
The public library is also getting quite the upgrade.
“We call it Mandan’s living room, where people come to relax and enjoy and sit down on a hot summer evening,” said Neubauer
“It’s one place that people can just congregate and meet. It’s like being around old friends again,” said Barb Sandstrom, the youth services coordinator of Morton Mandan Public Library.
Neubauer says things are a little crazy right now, but it’s part of the process.
“We’ve got high school, water treatment plant, lower heart project. Those three multi-million dollar projects back in the ’50s are the same projects we have going on in 2021,” said Neubauer.
On top of city improvements, the Mandan Progress Organization is planning the return of some local events. Buggies n Blues, the rodeo and Fourth of July Parade are all making a comeback.
“Trying to get back to somewhat normal. From last year’s either COVID canceled, or events were much smaller,” said Neubauer
“People just want to get out. It’s amazing. We canceled the parade last year, and people complained about it,” Layne Mudder, the president of Mandan Progress Organization.
So, what’s the goal here?
“If you’re driving around on a weekend or the evenings and you’re seeing a car parked in front of the businesses downtown, we want the amenities that people want to see, and again, part of that is the increase to the library and the park downtown. We like people who are living in town to spend their disposable income downtown which adds to our sales tax base and also our overall tax base for the city of Mandan,” said Neubauer.
Neubauer says the construction should wrap up later this fall.
Memorial Highway will be the next big Mandan road seeing construction and improvements.
Neubauer says that will start soon and continue as far out as 2023.