Building boom in N. Dakota's oil patch

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North Dakota Oil Boom Housing
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Building boom in N. Dakota's oil patch
In this June 9, 2014 photo, drivers and their tanker trucks, capable of hauling water and fracking liquid line up near a natural gas burn off flame and storage tanks in Williston, N.D. The epicenter of the oil boom is a 45-mile stretch of U.S. Route 85 in North Dakota between the towns of Williston and Watford City. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
This June 12, 2014, aerial photo shows four oil wells in various stages of production, from drilling to a fully functional pump producing well, in McKenzie County, N.D. An oil boom near North Dakota’s Badlands has created an infrastructure building frenzy as the rush for jobs and oil production demand roads, homes, food trucks, stores and more. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
This June 12, 2014 aerial photo shows a temporary housing development in Watford City, N.D. Oil patch towns, outposts of oil production now struggling to become livable cities, are trying to keep up with the oil boom. And housing, from apartment blocks in front of oil wells and flares to sprawling trailer parks on bluffs, are popping up across the countryside. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
This June 12, 2014 aerial photo shows an oil producing well with two pumps near the banks of the Missouri River in McKenzie County, N.D. Over the past six years, the U.S. has cut coal consumption by 195 million tons as power plants have burned cheaper natural gas instead. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
This June 12, 2014, aerial photo shows various stages of a temporary housing development in Watford City, N.D. Oil patch towns, outposts of oil production now struggling to become livable cities, are trying to keep up with the oil boom. And housing, from apartment blocks in front of oil wells and flares to sprawling trailer parks on bluffs, are popping up across the countryside. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
In this June 12, 2014 aerial photo, heavy machinery plows through farmland for the construction of the U.S. Route 85 bypass around Watford City, N.D. The highway between the towns of Williston and Watford City was once a two-lane road across the lonely prairie. Now the road is being transformed into a four-lane highway with bypasses cutting around towns. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
This June 12, 2014, aerial photo shows the beginning of a subdivision for permanent homes in McKenzie County, N.D. An oil boom near North Dakota’s Badlands has created an infrastructure building frenzy as the rush for jobs and oil production demand roads, homes, food trucks, stores and more. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
In this June 12, 2014 aerial photo, the Missouri River winds through the countryside near Williston, N.D. The epicenter of the oil boom is a 45-mile stretch of U.S. Route 85 in North Dakota between the towns of Williston and Watford City. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
This June 12, 2014, aerial photo shows a temporary housing development in Watford City, N.D. Oil patch towns, outposts of oil production now struggling to become livable cities, are trying to keep up with the oil boom. And housing, from apartment blocks in front of oil wells and flares to sprawling trailer parks on bluffs, are popping up across the countryside. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
In this June 9, 2014 photo, the burn off flame of natural gas lights up the night sky in Williston, N.D. Over the past six years, the U.S. has cut coal consumption by 195 million tons as power plants have burned cheaper natural gas instead. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
In this June 12, 2014 aerial photo, heavy machinery plows through farmland for the construction of the U.S. Route 85 bypass around Watford City, N.D. The highway between the towns of Williston and Watford City was once a two-lane road across the lonely prairie. Now the road is being transformed into a four-lane highway with bypasses cutting around towns. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
In this June 9, 2014 photo, a traffic accident adds to the expansion problems of U.S. Route 85 between Williston and Watford City, N.D. The highway between the towns was once a two-lane road across the lonely prairie. Now the road is being transformed into a four-lane highway with bypasses cutting around towns. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
This June 12, 2014, aerial photo shows an oil producing area with two pumps near the banks of the Missouri River in McKenzie County, N.D. Over the past six years, the U.S. has cut coal consumption by 195 million tons as power plants have burned cheaper natural gas instead. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
In this June 12, 2014 aerial photo, housing for oil field workers sits right next to a working well near Watford City, N.D. An oil boom near North Dakota’s Badlands has created an infrastructure building frenzy as the rush for jobs and oil production demand roads, homes, food trucks, stores and more. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
In this June 12, 2014 aerial photo, tanker trucks line up waiting to haul water or tracking fluid in Watford City, N.D. As America tries for a greener approach to energy by relying more on natural gas, energy companies are shipping more and more coal abroad. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
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WILLISTON, N.D. (AP) -- President Theodore Roosevelt once came to North Dakota's Badlands to find solitude and solace amid the area's "desolate, grim beauty." But Roosevelt's Dakota is barely visible today.

The area's oil boom has resulted in an infrastructure-building frenzy as the rush for jobs and oil demands more roads, homes, food trucks and stores.

The epicenter is a 45-mile stretch of U.S. Route 85 between the towns of Williston and Watford City. Once a sleepy two-lane road across the lonely prairie, it's being transformed into a four-lane highway with bypasses cutting around towns. In the spring and summer, oil patch roadwork slows traffic to a trickle akin to a major metropolis' rush hour.

Oil patch towns - outposts of oil production now struggling to become livable cities - are trying to keep up. And housing, from apartment blocks in front of oil wells and flares to sprawling trailer parks on bluffs, are popping up like weeds across the countryside.

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Follow AP photographers and photo editors on Twitter: http://apne.ws/1ox8vgG

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