Hoeven Helped Secure $39 Million for TRNP's Scenic Loop Repair, Working with NPS & FHWA to Complete Project by the End of 2022
Senator Reviews Maintenance Needs at TRNP, Efforts to Establish Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library with Interior Deputy Secretary & NPF President
MEDORA, N.D. – Senator Hoeven today discussed maintenance needs at the Theodore Roosevelt National Park (TRNP), including the repair of the Scenic Loop Drive in the park’s South Unit, in a meeting with Interior Deputy Secretary Tommy Beaudreau, National Park Foundation President and CEO Will Shafroth, TRNP Superintendent Wendy Ross and state and local officials. Hoeven outlined his:
- Efforts to secure funding for scenic loop repairs, for which the National Park Service (NPS) has committed $39 million to date.
- Work with Interior, NPS and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to ensure the project stays on schedule and is completed by the end of 2022.
In addition to the scenic loop repairs, Hoeven discussed efforts to:
- Establish the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library on land adjacent to the park.
- Hoeven worked to pass legislation in December enabling the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library Foundation to purchase Forest Service land in Billings County to construct the library and museum.
- Hoeven included leaders from Billings County and the Medora Grazing Association in today’s meeting to help ensure local input on these efforts.
- Today’s meeting builds on efforts to preserve local control for the project. Accordingly, the library foundation is consulting with the local community and county government on the project’s development, and the U.S. Forest Service has committed to maintain the Medora Grazing Association contract for 10 years.
- Update and improve the Painted Canyon Visitors Center.
“We’re working to update and repair the Theodore Roosevelt National Park’s infrastructure, with $39 million having been slated for the rebuilding of a 5-mile stretch of the south unit’s scenic loop,” said Hoeven. “At the same time, we continue to advance the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library to honor this president’s legacy, both for our state and nation. In these ways, we are working to ensure visitors and residents will be able to have a safe and enjoyable experience at this park for years to come. I appreciate the NPS’ continued hard work toward this goal, and I thank Deputy Secretary Beaudreau for learning about, and working with us on, these priorities.”
Rebuilding TRNP’s Scenic Loop
Hoeven has been working to help advance repairs for TRNP’s scenic loop, having pressed the issue with multiple agencies under both the Trump and Biden administrations. To this end, the senator has held regular meetings with Interior, NPS and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to help ensure the project receives funding and to monitor its progress.
The FHWA began its preconstruction work for the scenic loop last year, which includes a geotechnical assessment and design, with construction expected to start in spring of 2022.
Advancing the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library
Hoeven has been working to build support for the development of the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library. The senator previously secured commitments from leadership at the NPS and Shafroth, who leads the charitable partner to the NPS, to help advance this effort. In 2019, Hoeven also hosted then-Interior SecretaryDavid Bernhardt in North Dakota to outline the plans for the library’s construction. The facility will include more than 50,000 digitized documents and other archives from the Theodore Roosevelt Center at Dickinson State University (DSU).
During today’s meeting, Hoeven reviewed the project’s fundraising efforts to date and encouraged NPS, the library foundation and local stakeholders to maintain open lines of communication and work together in a collaborative manner. The library’s foundation has raised $155 million, with a $50 million match coming from the state, for a total of $205 million. The project is scheduled to break ground by 2023.
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