ACHD Marks Four Decades of Service
Ada County's roads in good shape as innovations and service continue

More than four decades ago, Ada County voters created a new local government -- one charged with doing Pothole with copsomething about the potholes that dotted area roads like candy sprinkles on a donut. The Ada County Highway District was established to oversee and improve all local roads within the county, including those within the cities. Forty-five years later, the county's roads are highly rated -- as is the agency citizens brought into being.

ACHD has a tradition of innovation -- from alternative transit, to signal timing and big picture planning. As we look back at the experiment in local government started by voters, the articles below highlight some of the accomplishments, the innovations and the future plans of the District.

While unusual, ACHD's concept of one agency to oversee all the roads has been endorsed repeatedly. Most recently, the Urban Land Institute backed ACHD in a 2007 study that assessed the District, as well as made suggestions for improvements that are being pursued today.

"The panel's sense is that the county -- if not the valley or the region as a whole -- is lucky to have a unique countywide entity to build, operate, and maintain the road system," panel members concluded. "ACHD not only provides an effective and efficient means to manage the road system but also provides a great foundation on which to better integrate land use and transportation planning.

"In addition, the public generally views ACHD as an agency that does a good job of operating and maintaining the existing road system in the county (according to 55 percent of the survey respondents and most of the interviews) and recognizes that having a regional entity build and maintain the road system for all local jurisdictions creates economies of scale."