Highways 101: Vallivue students share suggestions
for highway improvements with D-3 staff

About 20 students from Vicki Scaggs’ sophomore English II class at Vallivue High School visited District 3 Monday (May 16) morning to present a petition to ITD suggesting safety improvements on Idaho 55 through the Nampa and Caldwell areas.

Students presented the petition to Michael Garz, the district’s program manager, who then spent the next two hours giving a “Highways 101” lesson to the class, delving into how ITD is structured, how it is funded, how projects are selected, the future of Idaho 55 and safety improvements south of the interstate. He also answered questions from the visiting delegation that focused on accident history and how safety improvements are proposed.

“This is exactly the kind of thing that helps me when I’m presenting my suggestions,” Garz said, patting the petition. The class, the Student Committee to Improve Highway 55, was happy to know that one of its suggestions – a traffic light at the intersection of Lake Avenue and Karcher Road – already has been planned for FY 2015. Lights at Midway and Middleton roads also are planned at their intersections with Idaho 55/Karcher.

To address safety concerns along Karcher Road (Idaho 55), ITD added safety beacons to the stop signs as well as advisory/warning signs last summer at four major intersections between the Sunnyslope curve and Nampa.

 Red beacons were mounted above stop signs at the following four intersections along Idaho 55/Karcher Road:

  • Lake Avenue
  • Midway Road
  • Indiana Avenue
  • Farmway Road

Amber beacons also were mounted to the "intersection ahead" advisory signs on Karcher Road as drivers approach those intersections.
Flashing red means stop; flashing amber means caution.
Garz will meet with the Highway Safety Advisory Committee this month and will convey to the class any progress involving their safety suggestions. The advisory committee is made up of representatives from each of ITD’s six districts and a representative from the Local Highway Technical Assistance Council.

Published 5-20-2011