Williston’s economy, while historically agricultural, is also driven by the oil industry. Williston lends its name to the Williston Basin, a huge subterranean geologic feature known for its rich deposits of petroleum, coal and potash. Williston sits atop the Bakken formation, which in 2014 surpassed the 1 million barrel per day production level, making North Dakota the second highest oil producing state behind Texas. The Williston area is still “Rockin’ the Bakken” and increasing retail investment and restaurant offerings to give residents choices and new opportunities as quality of life continues to improve.
The City of Williston and Williams County continue to work together for growth. The City of Williston has expanded by over 10,000 acres since 2010. Investments of over $385 million in capital improvement projects were made in 2016 and there are plans to continue projects through 2020. Most notable projects have been in Transportation (Rail and Roads) and the Airport, but significant improvements were seen in Public Works and Utilities and Public Safety. Williston Economic Development office is hard at work reimagining our area.
For the outdoor enthusiast, the opportunities are as vast as the North Dakota plains. Not only is western North Dakota well-stocked with an abundance of wildlife, but is also a destination for some of the best fishing opportunities for walleye, northern pike, and prehistoric paddlefish. Since 2014, people have been utilizing the region’s premier fitness center: the Williston Area Recreation Center(ARC) located on Williston State College’s campus. From wave pools and water slides, to golf simulators, batting cages, and an arcade—the ARC has something for everyone. Williston Convention and Visitors Bureau has a lot of information on what to do and where to stay. During warmer seasons Spring Lake Park offers amenities like bike paths, rentable pavilions, and a dog park. Lewis & Clark State Park, Lunds Landing, and historic places like Fort Union and Fort Buford, the Confluence are nearby!