Ada County Highway District

ACHD's Road Wizard Sunday, June 24, 2018 ACHD's Road Wizard

Passing on the right to get around motorists turning left by using a bike lane is legal if done safely; request for permanent digital speed feedback sign on Division Avenue; there aren't any practical ways to improve drop-off/pick-up congestion at Anser Charter School in Garden City.

The Road Wizard Replies

Dear Road Wizard: I have seen so many dangerous incidents where drivers pass on the right to get around cars turning left. The passers cut through both the bike lane and the parking lane to make the maneuver, often passing multiple cars stopped behind the turning vehicle. It strikes me as dangerously impatient, but is it illegal? My fright came on Warm Springs Avenue when an eastbound car was turning north onto Hot Springs Drive as I was turning south onto Homestead Drive to enter M&W Markets. A second eastbound car came around the turning vehicle and almost T-boned me. As always, I really appreciate your column, not just when I'm venting my pet peeves!


Road Wizard:

I would be shaking in my pedals too. But maybe you were in a car. Whatever the case, Idaho Code states that a motorist may pass on the right if there is enough room on the pavement and if the passing can be done safely.

But the code goes on to say that the "movement shall not be made by driving off the roadway." A paved bike lane, shoulder or parking space may or may not be considered an official part of the roadway, depending on how a person interprets state and local codes.

But the Boise Police Department says that passing on the right by using the bike lane and pavement is legal as long as a driver does not impede or endanger a cyclist or motorist. Officers are now giving the Warm Springs location more patrol attention.

Dear Road Wizard: I see ACHD is putting up permanent speed displays; who can I talk to about getting one of those on Division Avenue? I'm more than happy to put it in front of my house, even.


Road Wizard:

ACHD is installing around 50 of the speed feedback signs, but they need to test how effective they are before funding any more. Where the signs are most effective will influence any future installations and citizen requests may be considered if any additional signs are purchased.

Dear Road Wizard: During hours when Anser Charter School parents and truck drivers from UPS, Grasmick Produce, and A-1 Heating and Air Conditioning all pile up at 42nd Street and Adams Street, the intersection is complete gridlock. I am very concerned about this intersection understanding that an additional charter school will open this fall at the Moseley Center Boys and Girls Club. I fear complete gridlock between traffic coming off Veterans Memorial Parkway and all of the parents who, being finished dropping off, usually head back toward Adams/VMP because you can't turn left effectively onto Chinden at these times of day. Are there any mitigation plans for this intersection?


Road Wizard:

Charter schools and largely industrial areas aren't a great transportation combination. And the "Future Charter School" opening next school year north of Adams on 42nd Street may add to the traffic troubles.

ACHD has considered input from parents, school officials, and Garden City Police regarding Anser over the years. ACHD has already installed crosswalks, school signage and made parking adjustments.

ACHD also evaluated stop signs and traffic congestion on 42nd Street, and the existing arrangement is appropriate for traffic patterns over the course of a day. Extraordinary measures typically are not taken to resolve school-related drop-off/pick-up congestion because this occurs over a relatively short period of time.

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