BOISE, Idaho — Over the next two weeks, the Idaho Transportation Department is hosting an online meeting to share plans for the next phase of extending Idaho Highway 16 through the central Treasure Valley. The meeting will be available from May 21 to June 4.
The meeting includes a virtual tour and design plans for the future north-south corridor, which is currently the primary route to Emmett. ITD is extending the corridor 5.5 miles south to connect with I-84.
The extension will operate as a high-speed expressway, with limited access on or off it. By 2040, the highway is expected to serve 60,000 motorists each day in the growing area between Ada and Canyon counties.
"This corridor has been in the making for many years and the community has given input at many important stages of this significant highway corridor," said ITD Program Manager Amy Schroeder. "All of the design plans in this online meeting are consistent with the overall vision and allows ITD to proceed to construction next year."
Phase 1 was completed in 2014 and involved building a bridge over the Boise River and connecting U.S. 20/26 and Idaho 44.
On Wednesday, the Idaho Transportation Board approved funding to construct the next phase of the extension. Phase 2, the focus of the online meeting, will build the remaining five miles of highway from U.S. 20/26 to I-84. This includes an interchange with I-84, connections at Franklin and Ustick roads, and bridge structures over local roads, canals, and a railroad.
The estimated cost of this work is $170 million. It will be funded using bonds and paid off using new sales tax funds approved by the Idaho Legislature in 2021.
"The work we have done on the Idaho 16 corridor in the last few years has prepared us to quickly leverage this new funding stream," said Schroeder. "We have an obligation to the taxpayer to make the most of the today's low interest rates and bring needed transportation investments to Idaho quickly."
The online meeting will include live Q&A sessions from 12-1 p.m. and 5:30-6:30 p.m. on June 2.
Those without internet access should contact ITD at (208) 334-8008 or Idaho16@ITD.Idaho.gov.
Watch more Local News:
See the latest news from around the Treasure Valley and the Gem State in our YouTube playlist: