Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Eagle – In early 2010, Jan Leifson and Terry Sayer approached the ACHD Commission asking for improvements to the State Highway 44/State Street/Ballantyne Lane intersection.
Safer, signalized intersection opens at Highway 44/State Street
On Tuesday at 10 a.m., their pleas will be answered when the new intersection at SH44 and State opens and the signal is activated. The $1.5 million facility goes into service a year earlier than originally scheduled.
"This is something that needed to happen sooner rather than later, and we’re just so very happy that we were able to respond," said John Franden, the ACHD Commissioner who represents the Eagle area.
The project was advanced using the savings from other construction projects, which experienced lower-than-expected costs during the economic downturn.
"This really is the upside of the down economy," Franden said.
Several serious accidents, including a couple of fatalities, have occurred at intersection, where the east-west route through the City of Eagle has entered the state highway on a high-speed curve. The new intersection connects State Street about 1,300 feet to the west, on a straight section of the highway and now with the protection of a signal to stop cross traffic.
Leifson lost a family member at the old intersection in early 2010. Vaneta Cottle was returning from a birthday party.
"We had told her several times about not using that intersection," Leifson testified to the Commission.
Sayer, who was in an accident at the intersection in 2005, said she generally avoided the intersection unless riding with others.
"I’ve held my breath for the last four years every time I’ve turned out there," Sayer testified.
Last week, Sayer and Leifson said they were pleased to see the project open much sooner than originally planned.
Note to media: The signal will be activated at 10 a.m. after a short ribbon cutting featuring members of the ACHD Commission, the Eagle City Council and others. Terry Sayer and Jan Leifson said they plan to attend.