Gov. Otter leads groundbreaking ceremony for Stage 2, Twin Falls alternate route
TWIN FALLS - Governor C.L. "Butch" Otter joined citizens, business leaders and government officials this morning to launch a highway construction project that will create or sustain approximately 500 jobs, improve safety and reduce congestion in Twin Falls.
More than 100 people participated in the groundbreaking ceremony for the Twin Falls Alternate Route, Stage 2 project.
The $26.6 million federal stimulus project will speed commerce through the area and improve local shopping opportunities by providing an alternate route for motorists and commercial traffic traveling past Twin Falls.
The first stage of the Twin Falls Alternate Route, from Blue Lakes Boulevard to Grandview Drive, was completed in 2006. Stage 2 will continue for six miles west along Pole Line Road to 2400 East Road then south to the U.S. 93/U.S. 30 junction.
The highway will be two lanes but is engineered to expand to four lanes when the traffic volume warrants. The project also will construct a four-lane bridge over Rock Creek Canyon. The existing dirt fill and culvert will be removed and the creek restored through this area as part of the project.
"For the past three years, the Twin Falls alternate route has been a modern highway connecting to a county road," Governor Otter said. "Finishing the alternate route is long overdue and will increase safety, reduce congestion and keep more jobs and career opportunities in the Magic Valley."
Joining the Governor in the ceremonies were Idaho Senate Transportation Committee Chairman John McGee, Rep. Leon Smith, Twin Falls Mayor Lance Clow and Glanbia Inc. President and CEO Jeff Williams.
"For Idaho to remain economically competitive, we must first maintain, then improve our highways and bridges," Williams said. "The key to Glanbia's and Idaho's economic success is to move our products efficiently and safely across the country and the world. Maintaining and enhancing our transportation system will require new investments and vision."
Twin Falls Mayor Lance Clow thanked the community for its patience and the Governor and the transportation board for dedicating stimulus funds to the project.
"On behalf of the City of Twin Falls, I want to thank Governor Otter and the Idaho Transportation Board for recognizing the importance of this project to the safety and economy of the Magic Valley."
W.W. Clyde Inc. of Springville, Utah, is the contractor on the project. Construction will begin this fall and is expected to be complete by the end of 2011.