Ada County Highway District

ACHD's Road Wizard Sunday, August 07, 2016 ACHD's Road Wizard

Boise Hills Drive won't get an orange, 20 mph sign for chip sealing; Five Mile Road and Amity Road intersection doesn't qualify for a rebuild, but new pavement is planned; eastbound Broad Street will get a one-way sign for Capitol

The Road Wizard Replies

Dear Road Wizard: My family lives on Brumback Street at the bottom of Boise Hills Drive on the corner of 7th Street. While there are a number of ACHD 20 mph speed limit signs posted by 8th and 9th streets for the chip sealing program, there are none on Boise Hills. Especially where it curves, where people are just blowing by and kicking up significant dust. This is being exacerbated by a number of larger construction vehicle drivers working up in the hills that also are not being mindful of the speed limit. Would it be possible to have one or two of the 20 mph signs moved up the street a little farther to that curve on Boise Hills? We and our surrounding neighbors would greatly appreciate it.

Road Wizard:

ACHD added about 200 new orange construction signs to the inventory this year to be used at chip seal locations. We've seen them all: "Loose Gravel," "No Parking" and "20 mph."

Despite that, an orange 20 mph sign wasn't placed on Boise Hills during the chip sealing work because the speed limit is already 20 mph. No sign-stinginess here; it's just that everyday, black-on-white 20 mph signs are already posted.

Some people choose to exceed the speed limit regardless of what kind of sign is visible. It may be time to call in police enforcement, but I'll leave that decision to area residents.

Dear Road Wizard: Are there any plans to redesign and rebuild the Five Mile Road and Amity Road intersection? The unfortunate position of a power pole makes a right turn from Five Mile onto Amity extremely tight. Large vehicles and pickups towing cargo trailers can't turn without intruding into Amity's left-turn lane. I believe this power pole was replaced or repaired several years ago due to vehicle damage. Hopefully this intersection will be modernized soon.

Road Wizard:

Five Mile and Amity received the "interim traffic signal treatment" in 2006. New turn lanes were squeezed into what was a four-way stop.

More recently, an "asphalt pathway" was constructed. To make room for the extended shoulder, the approach to the signal was shifted, and turning is tight, as described.

However, the traffic demands on the intersection don't yet justify an intersection reconstruction and expansion. The interim signal functions well enough for this relatively low-volume location.

But how about that bumpy ride? The intersection is expected to get smooth new asphalt within the next month. I hope this news gets to "Donna," who wrote about the "atrocious" pavement conditions five years ago.

Dear Road Wizard: If there is a one-way sign at the intersection of Broad Street and Capitol Boulevard when heading east on Broad, I don't see it. I have seen at least one out-of-state car turn the wrong way onto Capitol at that intersection when traffic is light on a Sunday.

Road Wizard:

Most locals visiting BoDo or Trader Joe's are so familiar with one-way Capitol, they wouldn't notice the lacking sign. But visitors are important, especially with one of three under-construction hotels going up at the intersection.

The stop sign for eastbound Broad at Capitol will get back-to-back one-way signs, with one serving eastbound traffic, and the other facing westbound drivers. The existing one-way sign for westbound Broad will be relocated to the top of that stop sign.  

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