Dozens of trees are being removed in the Fort Boise-East End area as part of St. Luke's new campus in downtown Boise. The trees are being cut down to make way for the start of major road work on Monday, July 10.
The work is being done by St. Luke's Health System, in conjunction with the Ada County Highway District and the City of Boise.
Sixty-four trees will be taken out and 90 trees will be planted as road work is completed. St. Luke's officials say removing the trees was never part of St. Luke's original plan for the new campus, but after hearing from the City of Boise, ACHD, and the community, St. Luke's agreed to help make road improvements.
The road improvements, that we're told require the trees to be removed, are putting in wider sidewalks, cycle tracks, bike lanes and round-a-bout treatments.
Dave McFadyen, St. Luke's Boise Hospital Administrator, says the work will create easy movement around the new campus for not only patients trying to access the facility, but also the folks who want to get around it quickly.
"Hopefully for those that live and work in the area, traffic doesn't flow that well today and so as we get through this project we'll do our best to re-route, but I think in a few short months they'll see the impact and how much better it will be in the future," said McFadyen.
Road work is expected to take anywhere from 8-18 months with the entire new campus master plan expected to take about seven years.
The new trees will be planted this fall or early next spring. The City of Boise appraised each tree being removed, and St. Luke's plans to plant trees that are considered more valuable.
Click here for more information on the new campus construction and traffic impacts.