The Idaho Transportation Board and commissioners from the Ada County Highway District agreed this week that good communication is an important part of their collaborative efforts to meet the transportation needs of the Boise area.
Representatives from both government agencies identified
the need to work closely together, especially in addressing continued
growth of Idaho’s largest metropolitan area, during a joint meeting
at ITD Headquarters Wednesday. It was part of the transportation board’s
monthly business meeting.
Some ways communication can be improved are to conduct joint board/commission meetings when issues of mutual concern are on the agenda and for ACHD to participate on the board’s annual District 3 tour.
Other discussion topics included access management and funding.
Additional revenue is needed to meet the transportation needs of the Treasure Valley. One of the board’s funding proposals for the 2007 legislative session includes requiring local units of government to enter into agreements with ITD to collect and expend development impact fees when it is determined that a proposed development has an impact on ITD highways.
Because ACHD has extensive experience with impact fees, its staff volunteered to assist ITD and give the board a presentation on the process the highway district uses in a future meeting.
Other board business
Transportation in the Tetons
The project is intended to address mobility and environmental issues in Idaho, Wyoming, Montana and the Teton and Yellowstone national parks. The goal is to organize the business, government and public sector in the three states to support a regional, market-driven system of clean transportation services. Those services include highways, transit, bicycles, airports, pedestrian pathways and information systems.
With inevitable growth in the region, transportation growth management and land issues are emerging as top concerns.
During a conference call last month, participants of the Yellowstone/Teton Transportation Initiative agreed to develop a business plan. At this week’s transportation board meeting, members approved ITD’s participation in the plan’s development and approved approximately $30,000 for Idaho’s share of planning costs.
Reed Ranch Airstrip
An airstrip located on the property had been open to the public for aircraft use. But after the exchange, the Forest Service closed the airstrip to the public except for use by prior permission.
The airstrip supports the state’s recreation and tourism industries, is the southern-most access to the South Fork of the Salmon River and is strategically located to serve as a safe landing point for air traffic returning to McCall, Cascade and Boise during inclement weather.
Aeronautics Advisory Board Chairman Rodger Sorensen told transportation board members the his group supports an application to the Forest Service for a special use permit that would transfer management and operation to the Division of Aeronautics.
Although some initial costs may be incurred for operation of the airstrip as a public facility – estimated at $5,000-$7,000 for items such as a wind sock and constructing tie downs – the ongoing costs should be minimal. The transportation board approved forwarding a request to the Forest Service.
Improvements to interstate structures
ITD crews placed traffic barriers on the I-90, Ninth Street Bridge deck to direct traffic away from the impacted pre-stressed concrete girders.
Weight restrictions were placed on the I-84, Cloverdale Road structure after it was struck.
The board approved repair funds – to be taken from the Board Unallocated Fund – for both structures, with the understanding that insurance companies covering the two vehicles that struck the bridges would reimburse the department for the repairs.