Roadside Program Administrator Cathy Ford will present the annual Safety Rest Area Status Report and Planning Map to the Idaho Transportation Board when it meets next week in Shoshone. The meeting will be Thursday (May 18) at the District 4 Office.
The board’s visit will officially start at 7 a.m. on Wednesday (May 17) with a breakfast meeting that includes Twin Falls area transportation organizations. The public meeting on the Forum on Transportation Investment will follow at 9:30 a.m. in the Twin Falls city council chambers. After lunch, the board will tour projects in Jerome and Twin Falls.
Some of the statewide safety rest area activities under way, according to Ford, include 511 sign overlays, which have been installed and are operational at all existing rest areas in districts 1 through 4. Districts 5 and 6 should be completed soon.
The Blacks Creek Rest Area along I-84 near Boise is being reconstructed. This $11 million project is scheduled to be finished by the end of this year. Two facilities in District 6 also are scheduled for reconstruction or rehabilitation this year: Clark Hill on U.S. 26 and Big Lost River on U.S. 20/26. Long-range plans include the construction of a number of new facilities. The first – Camas Prairie on U.S. 95 in District 2 – is scheduled for construction in 2009.
The Rest Area Maintenance Contract is being updated and standardized.
ITD is working with the Idaho Weed Awareness Coordinator to develop a weed awareness poster to educate the public on the dangers of transporting and spreading noxious weeds across the state. The poster will be displayed at Idaho’s Gateway Rest Areas to increase weed awareness in Idaho.
Currently, District 6’s rest areas are closed for the winter. ITD hopes to keep those facilities open year-round.
Other board discussion
CMAQ and Enhancement Projects
The primary purpose of Idaho’s CMAQ Program is to fund projects that help reduce ozone, carbon monoxide, and particulate matter, which result from transportation-related emissions.
Of the 43 projects requested for funding statewide, 23 totaling just over $4 million are recommended for funding. Recommended projects for FY09 include vacuum sweeper trucks, flusher/deicer trucks and traffic signal system upgrades.
Of the 47 statewide applications totaling approximately $20 million, the Enhancement Advisory Committee recommends funding 15, totaling just over $5 million.
Three basic project categories intended to enhance motorists’ traveling experienc are: historic, scenic/environmental, and pedestrian/bicycle. Some of the projects recommended for funding in FY09 include a bike path extension in Coeur d’Alene, sidewalks in Meridian, the Weiser Oregon Short Line Railroad Station rehabilitation, the Clark Street interchange entrance project in Pocatello and the west Lewiston entry enhancement project.