SAUK RAPIDS --  A major road construction project in Sauk Rapids has taken an important step forward. The Benton County Board of Commissioners has approved bids to buy and move homes along Benton County Road 3.

County Engineer Chris Byrd says there were approximately 30 structures up for bid including homes and garages. He says once the purchase agreements are signed, the new owners will have 45 days to remove the buildings.

Byrd says the county will then go out for bids to demolish the remaining homes and foundations.

The "3 Up the Hill" project will get underway in earnest as soon as next spring. The project is estimated to cost about $6,000,000 and the county only has about half of that secured through state and federal funding. Byrd says they hope to get more money from the Legislature next spring.