Ada County Highway District

ACHD's Road Wizard Sunday, July 10, 2016 ACHD's Road Wizard

Chesterfield subdivision in Meridian targeted by "slow down" graffiti; new right-turn-only requirement in right lane on Myrtle Street at 9th Street explained

The Road Wizard Replies

Dear Road Wizard: I am a resident of the Chesterfield Subdivision. Months ago, I found three large "Slow Down"signs painted in white spray paint on the pavement upon entering the subdivision. I reported it to Meridian police as graffiti/vandalism. The "signs" are on Meadowpine Street. However well-intentioned, they represent a serious detriment to the appearance of our neighborhood. ACHD covered the markings with large black squares of some dilution of tar. The letters, however, are showing through again. It would have been good if our constabulary could have discovered which kid or kids did the deed and have the parents pay. That was not the case. Could you please look into this and perhaps facilitate a permanent solution for the issues of speed, signage and graffiti?

Road Wizard:

Kids clutching spray paint cans in the night, looking to leave their mark by writing "Slow " is about the last type of graffiti I would expect.

Road departments actually encounter quite a few vigilante adults who try to reduce driving speeds by putting in their own speed limits, speed bumps, etc. But regardless of who spray-painted "Slow Down," it is illegal.

ACHD simply can't continue to put liquid asphalt over the paint; it is meant to be a topping for freshly chip-sealed roads. A chip seal in the area is expected in three years, which will bury the markings in small rocks.

One option in the meantime is for ACHD to cover the words with the grey paint typically used to mask graffiti on walls. But since "Slow Down" is not offensive, and doesn't cause a traffic hazard, it makes more sense to let the white paint slowly fade away. The words are already pretty faint.

As for speeding concerns, the speed limit in the subdivision is 25 mph, the lowest limit set in Meridian. "Children Playing/Slow Down" signs aren't considered effective, and the national practice is not to install them.

The road is also an unlikely candidate for speed bumps, which residents would have to agree to and pay for. Perhaps a subdivision meeting is in order?

Dear Road Wizard: What is the deal with the new right-turn-only requirement in the right lane between 11th and 9th streets on Myrtle Street in Downtown Boise? I used to stay in the very right-hand lane all the way down Myrtle until it ends/merges at Broadway Avenue. Now, I have to get one lane over to the left to get around that right-turn-only at 9th. Then the right-hand lane opens again for vehicles traveling down Myrtle. Why? This seems pretty stupid, and a cop out if you are just trying to slow traffic on Myrtle. I would like to hear your reasoning behind this decision! This ought to be pretty good!

Road Wizard:

Well, here goes nothing. Myrtle is under the jurisdiction of the Idaho Transportation Department, the same agency that is rebuilding the Broadway Bridge.

The designated detour route is the West Parkcenter Bridge. However, many drivers are choosing instead to turn right from Myrtle onto 9th to cross the Boise River. The temporary right-turn-only on Myrtle was put in place by ITD to handle the increase in turning drivers.

Bridge completion is expected this fall, and the right-turn-only lane will then reopen to through traffic. Was that "pretty good?"

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