The Idaho Transportation Board has approved funding to repair and add lanes on Interstate 84 between Franklin Boulevard and Karcher Road in Nampa in order to reduce congestion and improve safety in the region.
In a unanimous decision, the board approved $150 million in GARVEE (Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicle) bonds. This allows the department to advance a widening project to reconstruct existing lanes, add a third lane in each direction, and upgrade bridges between Franklin and Karcher.
“We recognize this I-84 corridor presents immediate safety and congestion concerns,” said chairman of the board Jerry Whitehead. “ITD engineers have shown a readiness to tackle the project and the board supports moving quickly to improve this section of road.”
This Franklin to Karcher project is moving fast, thanks to ITD staff completing initial planning and environmental assessment.
“We have known this corridor is a top concern that affects all of Idaho,” said ITD Director Brian Ness. “By adding lane miles, we can move more goods and services to businesses while reducing crashes. We thank the board for the opportunity to move forward as quickly as possible on this project.”
The $150 million authorization from the board is only half of the amount lawmakers allotted with Senate Bill 1206. Board members are reviewing other authorized corridors the bill outlined for GARVEE bonds.
“As we determine which projects to prioritize, we need the best information on all applicable corridors,” said Whitehead. “We look forward to getting that data from ITD engineers and moving forward in future board meetings.”
In future board meetings, the members will consider how best to spend the other revenue streams lawmakers created this year. That includes the surplus eliminator, one percent of sales tax, and a portion of the cigarette tax.