Engineering and Tribal Roads

About Us

The Red Lake Tribal Engineering Division is responsible for managing and planning for safe, efficient, and reliable roads for the Red Lake Nation. The Division maintains an inventory of over 1,600 miles of paved and maintained highways and roads that serve the Red Lake Nation and its people.

The Red Lake Reservation (Miskwaagamiiwi‐zaaga'igan) encompasses over 800,00 acres of land and waters in parts of nine counties (Beltrami, Clearwater, Lake of the Woods, Koochiching, Roseau, Pennington, Marshall, Red Lake, and Polk) in northern and northwestern Minnesota. The Reservation is widely regarded as having one of Minnesota's most distinct and rich environments, with majestic pine forests, awe-inspiring lake shores, and vast areas of wetlands that provide habitat to countless animal and plant species.

One of the most crucial components of a healthy economy and quality of life is a sound and efficient transportation system. The Engineering Division seeks to accomplish the development and maintenance of this important system by following its mission and values in all endeavors:

Our Mission

It is the Mission of the Tribal Engineering Division to deliver excellent customer service to the members of the Red Lake Band and to provide our Nation the safest and most reliable transportation system possible to strengthen our economy and improve the quality of life for present and future generations.

Our Values

  1. Dedication — We will provide quality service to the best of our ability.
  2. Respect — We will treat the Nation and its citizens as our valued customers, and treat the with respect.
  3. Innovation — We will improve and integrate transportation services using creative thinking and best available practices.
  4. Quality — We will do our best to ensure that all work done meets or exceeds acceptable standards.
  5. Honesty — We will provide the public accurate information that is understandable and accessible.
Dean J Branchaud

Contact Information

PO Box 274
Red Lake, MN 56671

Fax 218-679-2761

Dean Branchaud

Kade Ferris

Jeff Donnell
Construction Manager

Terry Lussier
Survey Lead

Nicole Desjarlait

Chris Roy
Survey Technician

Jeremy Smith
Survey Technician

Gary Chaboyea
Roads Inventory

Everett Johnson

Program Areas

Survey and Design

Our survey & design section is responsible for the survey and design functions of the Tribal Engineering Division, including the performance of topographic and ground surveys, the establishment of roadway design criteria, and the development of right-of-way and construction plans for proposed roadway improvement projects. Other key responsibilities include engineering oversight; performing lighting designs, trail marking designs, roadway signing designs, and maintaining and developing improved roadway design standards.

Land Surveys

We provide a full range of land surveying services, including Topographic, Metes & Bounds, Construction Stakeout and Right-of-Way Surveys, as well as plat preparation for Right-of-Ways, Easements and Subdivisions of land. We collaborate with various sections within division as well as other Tribal programs to ensure that survey data stays up to date and accurate. Our team is able to provide the best data necessary to ensure projects succeed and move ahead in a sound manner.

Survey and Design

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Construction Management

The Construction Management section is responsible for preparing proposals and letting to contract all transportation roadway and bridge projects and following projects through to completion. Contract administration on Red Lake Nation roadway projects and writing specifications and special provisions that protect the Nation and ensure projects meet all requirements. The Construction Management section also reviews the pre-qualification of all contractors that perform road construction work on our managed roads.

Field Management

In addition to the above management duties, the Construction Management section is directly responsible for monitoring construction on-site, day-to-day to ensure that construction proceeds safely and in accordance with established schedules and budgets. We handle all technical issues related to construction including advertising, opening and evaluating bids, recommending contract awards, processing contract modifications and coordinating responses to technical questions that arise during construction.


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Transportation Planning

The Transportation Planning section is responsible for collecting, analyzing, and reporting information for the reservation-wide transportation system. Major areas of responsibility include traffic counting and classification, compiling statistical data, cartography (mapping) and geographic information systems, feasibility planning, systems evaluation, public transportation, long range planning, intelligent transportation systems, and developing and coordinating Tribal policy on transportation issues.

Band members who wish to view any of our existing plans, please coordinate with our staff.

Long Range Planning

The Tribe has developed a Long-Range Transportation Plan to guide future transportation program development for the Red Lake Nation and to meet the federal and local requirements. The Plan is a broad-based policy document which identifies important transportation-related issues and provides direction for future programs and actions

Other Planning Efforts

Other key planning efforts include Non-Motorized Transportation Planning, Transportation Safety Planning, and annual Transportation Priority Planning.


Contact Information

Dean Branchaud

Kade Ferris

Archaeology & Historic Preservation

The Archaeology and Historic Preservation section is the Red Lake Nation's primary agency with knowledge and expertise in archaeology and historic preservation-related issues. The section is responsible for all cultural resource management and NEPA review for projects conducted on Red Lake Nation lands, and is an advocate for the preservation of the Nation's irreplaceable historic and cultural resources as assets for present and future generations.

Environmental laws and review processes at the federal, state, and Tribal level typically require consideration be given to protecting significant historic, archaeological sites, and traditional cultural properties from damage or loss during development. The Archaeology & Historic Preservation section works with federal agencies, tribal programs, and others to identify and develop protection strategies to assure that the Red Lake Nation’s cultural heritage is not impacted by projects on Tribal lands.


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