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Road Wizard

The Road Wizard appears in The Idaho Statesman, the Kuna Melba News and the Valley Times each week to explore local transportation matters. He tries to find out why situations occur and what is being done about them. The Wizard's column is a public service provided by ACHD.

If you have a question for the Wiz, e-mail it to or mail it to the Road Wizard, 3775 Adams St., Garden City, ID 83714. You may include photos of a particular situation, but photos cannot be returned.

Selected Year: 2015

December 27 - Getting around backups on Main Street during greenbelt construction; top-five insights from watchful readers over the year

December 20 - Well-meaning sweeper drivers go off course; new flashing yellow arrow signals on Boise Avenue at Broadway Avenue win praise; certain tire treads probably the reason for wild-ride sensation on Interstate 84

December 13 - Longer evening commute for Downtown Boise drivers due to lane closures and the new, two-way 13th Street; reader suggests limiting events after detour confusion during YMCA Halloween Run

December 06 - Informing residents of exact street sweeping days is difficult; Interstate 84's grooved pavement a problem for a reader

November 29 - Making a right turn where there is a green bike lane; Capitol Boulevard and Idaho Street left lane destination confusion; flashing yellow left-turn arrow coming to Idaho 44/State Street

November 22 - Request for a traffic signal at Lake Hazel and Meridian roads; bumpy 5th Street in Downtown Boise despite chip seal; odd signal behavior at Hill Road and Gary Lane/Hill Road Parkway

November 15 - Road dimples in Boise explained; sharrows are a compromise for bicycle users on Apple Street

November 08 - Who cleans up after crashes? What is needed for a school zone at Victory Road and Brandys Jewell Way? Request for a delay in the Main Street/Warm Springs Avenue crosswalk activation

November 01 - South Boise verses West End -- why the difference in stop signs and sidewalks? Cyclists can yield at stop signs, even when other intersection approaches don't stop; long green light for Fort Street traffic at Hays/5th explained

October 25 - Does bicycle and pedestrian demand warrant fewer vehicle lanes in Downtown Boise, and what are the politics involved? Can double left-turn lanes have one lane with a flashing yellow arrow?

October 18 - ACHD's bike box education effort; new Warm Springs Avenue sign points to unfinished road; short green light and long pedestrian signal wait at Ustick Road and McKinney Street

October 11 - Reader thinks Colchester Drive at Eagle Road gets faster green than Island Woods Drive; reader sees red lights all around at Gowen Road and Technology Way; last-minute merges update at Parkcenter Boulevard and Beacon Street

October 04 - Bike box confusion on Capitol Boulevard at Myrtle Street; reader says thanks for extra left-turn lane on Ann Morrison Park Drive onto northbound Capitol; Warm Springs Avenue sewer work closure reopens ahead of schedule

September 27 - Sidewalk markings on Brentwood Drive near Overland/Cole; intermittent left-turn green arrow on Locust Grove/ Central/Bentley Drive; bike lanes will be painted on Shoreline Drive; Fairview Avenue and Main Street in Boise fog sealed

September 20 - Reader doubts efficiency of removing travel lanes from 27th Street, disappearing through-lane on westbound Parkcenter Boulevard at bridge; reader comments on left-turning eastbound traffic on Idaho 44 getting two turns at the State Street extension

September 13 - "Rurban" Amity Road probably not ready for for a speed limit reduction; praise for 27th Street bike lanes and hopes for bike lanes on Orchard Street; reason why cul-de-sacs get no chip seals.

September 06 - ACHD tries steel roller as a way to make smoother bike lanes post-chip sealing; chipping slated for Warm Springs from Broadway to Harris Ranch next year; left turn on red light from Whitewater Park Boulevard onto Fairview Avenue -- when allowed?

August 30 - To stop or not to stop when a pedestrian enters an unlit HAWK crosswalk; speed bump request at Kroeger Park on Leadville Avenue; homeowners association wants to paint public street curbing red at fire hydrants

August 23 - Repairs delayed at railroad crossing at Cole and Franklin roads due to bad air; State Street and Veterans Memorial Parkway signal modified for morning school bus traffic; large dead tree branch at Stroebel Road and King Road intersection in Kuna

August 16 - Request for sharrows on 9th Street; brush blocking westbound shoulder on Riverside Drive; low-cost way to handle new apartment traffic at Capitol Boulevard and University Drive

August 09 - Temporary road signs blocking new bike lane on Capitol; Warm Springs Avenues becomes Parkcenter Boulevard in Harris Ranch; signal at Idaho 44 seems to treat State Street unfairly

August 02 - Driver debate: Legal to make a "right on red" from Americana Boulevard to Emerald Street? ACHD fixes different pothole than requested at Locust Grove and McMillan roads; off-campus housing impacts on Capitol Boulevard and University Drive

July 26 - Proper left turning from a side street onto a designated, shared center turn lane on a major street; reader offers examples of more (problematic?) duplicate intersections; ACHD looks for storm drain filter at McMillan and Five Mile roads

July 19 - Forgotten storm drain filter removed at 27th and Bannock streets; unnecessary “no left turn” sign noticed after standing for decades

July 12 - Reader suggests all-way stop at Eckert Road and Boise Avenue; about the new bike lane layout at Hill Road/Hill Road Parkway/Gary Lane ...

July 05 - Can ACHD request that property owners not water the road? Reader changes his mind about roundabouts and suggests that any landscaping be simple; ACHD will add more speed limit signs to 27th Street in Boise

June 28 - Reader wants 13th Street closed to traffic in Hyde Park -- or add stop signs; eroded asphalt and holes repaired at Lake Hazel and Cloverdale; complaint about short green light at Pleasant Valley and Gowen

June 21 - "Do Not Block Intersection" sign request denied on Ustick Road at Boulder Creek Avenue; "jaw-dropping" ruts at 15th and Idaho streets. Since dead end Mountain View Drive has a signal, why not the other section?

June 14 - Remaining truck route signs urging drivers to use Orchard Street instead of Curtis Road to be removed; ACHD completes crosswalk evaluation on Five Mile Road at Comba Park; reader unsatisfied with response to letter about HAWK pedestrian signals

June 07 - Miss-marked barricade on McMillan Road between Linder and Ten Mile roads confused reader; inactivity at Table Rock Road/Troutner Way job explained. Legal to make a right-on-red from the left-most, right-turn lane at 6th and Front streets?

May 31 - Safety features planned for the "dog bone" roundabout near school at 36th Street/Hill Road/Catalpa Drive; long red-light wait at Island Woods and Eagle Road explained

May 24 - A dark HAWK beacon is different than a darkened signal; another reader reacts to last-minute, right-lane mergers at Chinden and Eagle

May 17 - Reader disagrees with Road Wizard on merging into one lane after traffic signals; stop sign request on Shaw Mountain Road at Table Rock Road

May 10 - Why don't Idaho drivers happily alternately merge at two-thru-lane intersections that merge down to one lane? Will a traffic signal go back into operation at Fairview and Steelwood avenues? Thank you from reader

May 03 - Signal timing at Fairview Avenue and Orchard Street; reader concern about one of the two Vista Avenue/Airport Way intersections; new HAWK signal on Parkcenter Boulevard and seemingly delayed reaction

April 26 - Flashing yellow arrow delay explained at River/9th near Library! School speed zone decision-making and the reason for no zone at Sage International School

April 19 - Topics: ACHD traffic-monitoring video cameras aren’t designed to record traffic accidents; Parkcenter Boulevard and Bown Way traffic signal timing adjusted because of bridge closure; finding a way out for Sandy Springs subdivision residents

April 12 - Reader asks for clarification on bicyclists riding two or more abreast, particularly on Hill Road; request for another right-turn option on southbound Broadway Avenue on Front Street in downtown Boise

April 05 - Unexpected lane use at Whitewater Park Boulevard roundabout; Island Woods Drive at Eagle Road will get flashing yellow left-turn signals; reader reacts to residents posting parking restrictions on public road next to Baggley Park in Boise

March 29 - Can-Ada Road and Idaho Center Boulevard -- who is responsible for the rough part? Reader concerned about pollution exposure at red lights; Eagle and Lake Hazel intersection pavement repair

March 22 - "Residents Only" parking signs on Versailles Court near Baggley Park; spring weather means the Five Mile/Amity intersection gets permanent trench repair; vanishing crosswalk at Parkcenter Avenue and Apple Street repainted

March 15 - Some signals on Cherry Lane/Fairview Avenue east of Ten Mile Road favor eastbound morning commuters; droopy wire likely cause of Fairview/Cloverdale flashing yellow arrow confusion

March 08 - Wait times at major traffic signals seem too long for side streets at off-peak hours; odd signal behavior leads to confusion about flashing yellow arrows

March 01 - Crosswalk request at new Comba Park on Five Mile Road; "possible" vs. "practicable" when riding a bike; ACHD inspector moves roadwork sign in traffic lane on Coleen Drive

February 22 - Safe bicycling through the roundabout on Whitewater Park Boulevard and elsewhere; reader asks about red-light delays after moving from a signal-free place

February 15 - Reader wants 27th Street to return to four lanes; pipe work across Five Mile Road at Smoke Ranch Drive creates crevice, HAWK pedestrian signal at Irving Street and Maple Grove stops traffic without need

February 08 - Too low street signs on Five Mile Road between Franklin and Fairview; how ACHD came to be

February 01 - Fairview Avenue bike lane at 27th Street being used as a right-turn lane; narrow shoulder on Hill Road between Pierce Park and Gary Lane made tighter by landscaping

January 25 - Paint disappears from new left-turn lanes at Five Mile and Franklin roads; Five Mile Road misses out on chipseal near Lake Hazel; land survey markers along Cloverdale Road between Ustick and Fairview

January 18 - Tree-vs.-new stop sign concerns in Meridian; a chipseal is the most likely new surface to the 1700 block of Jefferson Street; speed study and speed humps requested for 27th Street in Boise

January 11 - Reader praises recent snow removal; requested signal at Lake Hazel and Meridian roads; electronic "noise" causes detection trouble at Bown Way and Boise Avenue

January 04 - Topics: Crosswalk location confusion at Parkcenter Avenue and Apple Street; future plans for the less than bike-friendly Gowen Road Bridge over the railroad tracks near the Boise Factory Outlet