ITD officials joined Caldwell residents and community leaders this afternoon (Friday, Dec. 1) in freezing temperatures to formally break ground on a new Interstate 84 interchange at Franklin Road.
Caldwell Mayor Garret Nancolas and Albertson College of Idaho President Bob Hoover were among the speakers at the afternoon event on the day following a modest snowstorm that turned Treasure Valley highways into ribbons of packed snow and ice. The groundbreaking event took place at the intersection of Specht Avenue and Franklin Road off of I-84.
The Albertson College of Idaho Chamber Singers performed during the short groundbreaking ceremony.
The previous day (Thursday) the public was invited to an open house at the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare building where the project information was available.
The reconstruction project will nearly double the capacity of the Franklin Interchange. The old overpass will be replaced with a new six-lane bridge over the interstate, including dual left turn lanes. All four interchange ramps will be improved and widened, and Franklin Road will be widened to five lanes between the overpass and Specht Avenue. The project also will widen and add a traffic light to Aviation Way.
When completed, the reconstructed interchange will accommodate 29,500 vehicles per day, greatly improving traffic flow and access to Caldwell and Albertson College. The college is located two miles from the interchange. Currently, 17,700 vehicles use the interchange daily.
Work is expected to be completed in the fall of 2008.
I-84 will remain open and accessible during construction, except for occasional night closures for safety. Lane reductions may be necessary on Aviation Way and Franklin Road. Work to construct a new storm sewer will require 21st Avenue to be closed briefly. Flaggers will be used when necessary to redirect traffic.
Concrete Placing of Boise is the contractor for the $25 million project.