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No ‘wrong side of the road’ turn at Eagle & Idaho 44: ITD changes course on intersection design

BoiseDev Exclusive

The intersection at Eagle Rd. and State St. (aka Idaho 44) won’t get a new-style ‘wrong side of the road’ turn lane after all.

BoiseDev first reported that ITD decided to reconsider the so-called partial continuous flow intersection earlier this month. Now the agency said it has decided: the turn lanes will not get the unconvential setup.

“The timeline, footprint and budget should remain about the same,” ITD communications manager Vince Trimboli said. “The budget may change plus or minus five or ten percent. We expect the cost to come in around the same.

In February, the transportation department issued a news release, explanatory video and saw extensive news coverage across the Boise area.

Public feedback

Trimboli acknowledged earlier this month that the department decided to take another look at the plan for the intersection after public feedback and concern on the partial CFI design.

The intersection would have required drivers make an unconventional traffic maneuver. Cars traveling along State St. that want to turn across traffic on to Eagle Rd. would shift to the left side of the road instead of the traditional right-hand side. In a video, ITD said the configuration is both “safer and more efficient” than a traditional intersection configuration.

The change in course is “because of public feedback,” Trimboli said. “The time and the situation isn’t right at this location for that type of intersection. We feel like a standard intersection design is more appropriate in this area.”

The project will still add lanes and capacity, but without the shifted lanes.

[With a nudge, ITD considers leaving Boise campus, with redevelopment possible]

Trimboli said that the current average delay above normal during peak drive times is currently 118 seconds – just about two minutes. With the displaced lane configuration, that delay would drop to 46 seconds, according to traffic engineers. But Trimboli said that revamping the intersection without the displaced lanes – a more traditional configuration – would put the delay at 60 seconds. That’s still an improvement of nearly 50% from the current traffic delay time, though it is higher than the CFI metrics.

Current peak delayPartial CFI peak delayTraditional intersection peak delay
ITD estimate118 seconds46 seconds60 seconds

Trimboli said the agency reached out to all the stakeholders involved – including the City of Eagle, COMPASS, ACHD and businesses in the area. He said they held a meeting with the City of Eagle last week and answered questions on the change.

“The lane configuration is the main change here,” Trimboli said. “We’re not looking at changing the existing right of way footprint, the budget or the schedule.”

The project should start soon and wrap up this fall.

Disclosure: ITD is a BoiseDev sponsor, with placement via a third party ad agency. It had no role in the selection or editorial process for this story.

Don Day - BoiseDev editor
Don is the founder and publisher of BoiseDev. He is a National Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a Stanford University John S. Knight Fellow. Contact him at [email protected].

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