Ada County Highway District

ACHD's Road Wizard Sunday, September 22, 2019 ACHD's Road Wizard

Can both right turn lanes turn right on red at the Meridian exit off of I-84; why do cyclists not stop at stop signs or red lights; improvements at the intersection of Cole and Victory

The Road Wizard Replies

Dear Road Wizard: Traveling east on I-84 and getting off at the Meridian exit, turning south (right) there are two turning lanes. My question is can BOTH lanes turn right on a red light after stopping, with no traffic coming?

Vikki

Road Wizard:

Yes, both lanes are permitted to turn right on red, assuming there is an adequate gap in traffic on Meridian Road. Initially, the interchange only allowed the rightmost lane to turn right on red and the leftmost lane was restricted. However, after observations of sight distance, it was determined that both lanes were able to make right turns on the red signal and the restriction was removed.

This also applies to the westbound off-ramp to turn northbound onto Meridian Road.

Dear Road Wizard: I recently moved into Ada County (I know, I know, I can feel the disdain as I type) and I have noticed that cyclists here don't really stop at stop signs or red lights. Is that even legal or do cyclists have some kind of special treatment? It just seems unsafe to me. Not from around here

Anonymous

Road Wizard:

To answer this question, we have to take a trip down the old memory lane to the tubular 80's. In 1982, the Idaho Stop Law was created. This law makes it legal for cyclists to treat a stop sign as a yield and a red light as a stop sign.

While this may not seem safe to a motorist, two studies have been conducted on the Idaho Stop Law; one of which found that the Idaho Stop Law resulted in 14 percent fewer crashes.

The Idaho Stop law seems foreign to many new residents because, frankly it is. Idaho is the longest practitioner of the stop-as-yield, and the only place where a red light can be treated as a stop sign for cyclists.

Dear Road Wizard: What is going on with the Cole Road and Victory Road Intersection? I filled out a comment sheet at the last open house and was hoping for some updates. I am excited to see the new bike lanes when the project is complete.

Ron

Road Wizard:

The Cole Road and Victory Road intersection is currently in the utility phase of work. Utility work, which is typically done in advance of the start of a project, will be done during the day. Motorists can expect to see flaggers on site to assist traffic with the lane restrictions that are present.

ACHD expects their work to start mid-November.

The new intersection will come with a new ThrU-Turn, similar to what is present at the intersection of State Street, Veterans Memorial Parkway, and 36th Street.

The ThrU-Turn will take into consideration the safety of pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists. Intersections with a ThrU-Turn are designed to increase the flow of traffic at the major intersection.

ACHD has an informative video here.

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