Diversion Inlet Structure


Residents of the flood-prone Red River Valley are looking forward to permanent relief with the construction of the Fargo-Moorhead Area Diversion Project. This complex effort was conceived to protect 230,000 people and 70 square miles of infrastructure from catastrophic flooding by limiting the flow of floodwaters into the metro area and diverting floodwater into a 30-mile-long bypass channel.

The FM Diversion Inlet near Horace, North Dakota, is one of three gated control structures Ames Construction is building on the project’s southern embankment. The inlet structure was the first contract awarded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for work on the project.

Ames crews began the inlet construction by using material excavated from the diversion channel to construct earthen dams. Two embankments were constructed on top of thousands of wick drains installed in the underlying soils to expedite soil consolidation and limit the amount of settlement.

Concrete work formed the foundation for massive Tainter gates, the radial arm floodgates that control the flow of water. Ames hit major milestones in 2022 with the delivery, assemblage, and installation of the gates. Crews also installed 44 cast-in-place deck panels that will serve as the service bridges over the dam walls.

With completion of the service bridges, electrical controls, painting, coatings, and final turf establishment, the Diversion Inlet is on track to be complete by the end of the 2023 construction season.

Learn more:
Metro Flood Diversion Authority