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Old 05-26-2012, 01:08 AM
 
382 posts, read 407,202 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pw72 View Post
Yeah, this isn't a simple bridge replacement. It is a major upgrade. The new bridge, as I understand it, will be built south of the current bridge to keep traffic moving. So, this new approach on the west side probably is just the realignment of the roadway to fit with the more southern location. If this was to include an onramp to I-15, then the feds would be more involved, and so far, I have not heard that they are. Also, I don't think an interchange at I-15 is needed here, as there is one just about a half mile to the north, albeit that Broadway interchange is also in need of a major rebuild, IMO. I would bet it is on the state's wish list.
I think the I-15, US 20 interchange is higher on the wishlist!
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Old 05-26-2012, 08:08 PM
 
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Yes, both the Broadway intersection with I-15, and the Hwy 20 intersection both are circa 1961. Agreed, both need to be replaced. However, I doubt there is much in the transportation budget for this to happen anytime soon. One caveat is that traffic on I-15 north of Broadway and especially north of Hwy 20 is light. Everytime I have merged SB onto I-15 at Broadway there has been absolutely little or no traffic to merge into. I guess traffic counts do mean something in this situation.
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Old 05-28-2012, 08:58 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pw72 View Post
Yes, both the Broadway intersection with I-15, and the Hwy 20 intersection both are circa 1961. Agreed, both need to be replaced. However, I doubt there is much in the transportation budget for this to happen anytime soon. One caveat is that traffic on I-15 north of Broadway and especially north of Hwy 20 is light. Everytime I have merged SB onto I-15 at Broadway there has been absolutely little or no traffic to merge into. I guess traffic counts do mean something in this situation.
The only reason I suggest I15/US20 is that during rush hour and other peak times traffic gets backed up down I15 almost as far down as the Broadway Exit. The stop light just doesn't work there. There needs to be a ramp coming off of I15 northbound that merges so traffic can keep moving.
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Old 05-28-2012, 10:35 PM
 
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Yes, the whole interchange needs to be rebuilt, no question.

Funding? Not so sure.

We are years away from public funding for these type of improvements. Perhaps Obama will suggest federal funding, but this is so uncertain, even if re-elected. He will need to convince congress, and there is no certainty in this. While I think the Feds can do quite a bit, the political climate today could be a problem.
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Old 05-28-2012, 11:00 PM
 
382 posts, read 407,202 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pw72 View Post
Yes, the whole interchange needs to be rebuilt, no question.

Funding? Not so sure.

We are years away from public funding for these type of improvements. Perhaps Obama will suggest federal funding, but this is so uncertain, even if re-elected. He will need to convince congress, and there is no certainty in this. While I think the Feds can do quite a bit, the political climate today could be a problem.
I agree that there are bigger issues in this country than an interchange in Idaho Falls, however, if it creates jobs and helps the economy it's worth it. I think the biggest issue is that the biggest chunk of road project dollars for Idaho goes to the Treasure Valley. Eventually both interchanges will be refine and if I remember correctly, it was to be completed within the 20 year plan.

I am very happy however with what has been done here over the last 7 years.

Sunnyside road and interchange
Hitt road overpass
St Leon overpass
Widening US 26 to Ririe
Pancheri overpass

Those are only the major highlights that stick out for me. I remember seeing a plan to widen US 91 between Idaho Falls and Shelley and both Hitt and St Leon are scheduled to be widened all the way to US 20.
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Old 05-28-2012, 11:11 PM
 
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Great post, IFguy. I will respond in coming days.
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Old 05-29-2012, 10:02 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IFGuy View Post
I agree that there are bigger issues in this country than an interchange in Idaho Falls, however, if it creates jobs and helps the economy it's worth it. I think the biggest issue is that the biggest chunk of road project dollars for Idaho goes to the Treasure Valley. Eventually both interchanges will be refine and if I remember correctly, it was to be completed within the 20 year plan.

I am very happy however with what has been done here over the last 7 years.

Sunnyside road and interchange
Hitt road overpass
St Leon overpass
Widening US 26 to Ririe
Pancheri overpass

Those are only the major highlights that stick out for me. I remember seeing a plan to widen US 91 between Idaho Falls and Shelley and both Hitt and St Leon are scheduled to be widened all the way to US 20.
The Sunnyside interchange was needed, and provides direct access to Idaho Fall's faux southern parkway, Sunnyside. It still is early, but so far, development has been slow around this interchange. Yes, a new motel, a new gas station, and a very small strip mall that is struggling. Anyone remember Fifth Avenue Pizza? Not a good location for them at this time, and they are gone. I still think the future is bright for this interchange, but it may take some time.

Hitt Road overpass? Not sure what you mean by this. I know Hitt Rd. and 17th will be improved, but are you referring to the Hwy 20 overpass already completed? (Frankly an overpass at Hitt and 17th would be great, but don't think there is room).

Pancheri we have discussed, but it is a big project. I said this before, but it doesn't really lead to anywhere except a high school and some residential. I would hope that new retail develops on both sides. Perhaps this will breathe new life into Taylor Crossing, and Snake River Landing. I am glad that replacement involves upgrading, as this is important to do when replacing bridges or highway.

St. Leon, OK, I get your drift here and answers my above question.

26 to Ririe, great, don't really have any thought there.
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Old 05-30-2012, 12:24 AM
 
382 posts, read 407,202 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pw72 View Post
The Sunnyside interchange was needed, and provides direct access to Idaho Fall's faux southern parkway, Sunnyside. It still is early, but so far, development has been slow around this interchange. Yes, a new motel, a new gas station, and a very small strip mall that is struggling. Anyone remember Fifth Avenue Pizza? Not a good location for them at this time, and they are gone. I still think the future is bright for this interchange, but it may take some time.

Hitt Road overpass? Not sure what you mean by this. I know Hitt Rd. and 17th will be improved, but are you referring to the Hwy 20 overpass already completed? (Frankly an overpass at Hitt and 17th would be great, but don't think there is room).

Pancheri we have discussed, but it is a big project. I said this before, but it doesn't really lead to anywhere except a high school and some residential. I would hope that new retail develops on both sides. Perhaps this will breathe new life into Taylor Crossing, and Snake River Landing. I am glad that replacement involves upgrading, as this is important to do when replacing bridges or highway.

St. Leon, OK, I get your drift here and answers my above question.

26 to Ririe, great, don't really have any thought there.
The reason I added US26 to Ririe is there have been a lot of accidents, and unfortunetly quite a few were fatal. There is a lot of traffic on that highway, and quite a bit during the summer. To widen through the "urban" area was a great investment.

The whole reason for the US 20 overpasses at Hitt and St Leon were also due to safety for one, but soon (no real timeline) both areas will be developed. Call it planning for yours needs I suppose.

The interchange at Sunnyside was unfortunately, like most other developments in Idaho Falls were stopped in their tracks due to the economic struggle known as the Great Recession. As things start to look up, Sunnyside Road near Exit 116 will develop. Just wait for the events center, things will progress.

Pancheri may not lead anywhere to the west yet. As for now, Pancheri does help people on the Westside get to the eastside and creates a nice thouroughfare away from Broadway and US 20.

If Idaho Falls can make an easier and more accesible route from Pancheri to Sunnyside, that will create a nice loop so to speak around the downtown core and the greenbelt.
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Old 05-31-2012, 03:21 PM
 
Location: Old Mother Idaho
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Highway 26 needs to be straightened out more than being widened, I think. Really a lot of the accidents happen on some of the few twisty sections of the road that are entered at too high speed that comes from the straightness of most of the road.

There are a ton of side roads that enter into 26 between Idaho Falls and Ririe. Most of these don't have enough room to exit or enter 26 very well- they are the same as they were 100 years ago, when there was less traffic and the speeds were a lot slower. Farm trucks use the side roads heavily year round, and are involved in a lot of the accidents.

It is a deceptive road in many ways, and while the ends of 26 have been drastically improved, the relatively short section between Idaho Falls and Ririe has surprisingly heavy traffic, going at higher speeds than is safe. That short section will be a big expensive job to correct, but I think it will only happen when the death count rises to a higher point than it is now.
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Old 05-31-2012, 07:29 PM
 
382 posts, read 407,202 times
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Originally Posted by banjomike View Post
Highway 26 needs to be straightened out more than being widened, I think. Really a lot of the accidents happen on some of the few twisty sections of the road that are entered at too high speed that comes from the straightness of most of the road.

There are a ton of side roads that enter into 26 between Idaho Falls and Ririe. Most of these don't have enough room to exit or enter 26 very well- they are the same as they were 100 years ago, when there was less traffic and the speeds were a lot slower. Farm trucks use the side roads heavily year round, and are involved in a lot of the accidents.

It is a deceptive road in many ways, and while the ends of 26 have been drastically improved, the relatively short section between Idaho Falls and Ririe has surprisingly heavy traffic, going at higher speeds than is safe. That short section will be a big expensive job to correct, but I think it will only happen when the death count rises to a higher point than it is now.
I think that eventually, US 26 between IF and Ririe will have overpasses at all the necessary points much like US 20 between IF and Rexburg. The urban portion just east of IF I think is ok up until the State Route 43 (Ammon Road) intersection. I think possibly we will see a rebuild of that well into the future, say 15-20 years. After that I would imagine overpasses at Crowley Road, Iona North Road, and two or maybe three more beyond that point. The stretch after Ririe I don't believe is as much of a problem. It seems that most of the accidents you mention are well within the urban portion.
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