Paving of US-12 near Orofino starts Thursday

Car drives on deteriorating pavement on US-12 between Big Canyon (Peck) and Orofino

Crews will start paving nearly five miles of US-12 west of Orofino this Thursday, September 19. They are expected to remain on site until the middle of October, though traffic impacts after paving will be minimal.

Replacing deteriorating pavement from Big Canyon Road to Tuning Drive is estimated to take one week, with drivers guided by a pilot car through the single-lane work zone.

Work will take place during daylight hours, and the highway will open fully at night.

Other weather-dependent work includes adding rumble strips and pavement marking. Earlier this year, guardrail was replaced and signage was updated in advance of paving.

Closures for US-95 construction in Culdesac Canyon shifted into evening commute to accommodate dwindling daylight hours

Equipment on a trail above US-95 in Culdesac Canyon helps with rock removal to extend the passing lane.

With shorter daylight hours, construction delays on US-95 in Culdesac Canyon near Winchester are shifting earlier and expected to affect evening commutes as fall conditions require a change in the contractor’s blasting schedule.

Since construction began in April to extend a passing lane through the rocky canyon, closures for blasting have typically been scheduled to start at 7 p.m., but dwindling daylight now requires blasting to occur before sunset.

Next week, rock excavation and cleanup activities will begin at 6:30 p.m., and the following week they will begin at 6 p.m.

Temporary closures are still expected to last up to 1.5 hours, with up to three closures possible each week. They are advertised on and on message signs stationed near the project.

Work this season is expected to end by November, with the entire project scheduled for completion in fall 2020.

Pavement preservation on several highways in North-Central Idaho begins this week

US-95 between Lapwai and Spalding Bridge, to be sealcoated summer 2019

Sealcoats to preserve existing pavement on several highways across North-Central Idaho will begin Thursday, July 25. All work will be done by September.

Flaggers will direct traffic to run on one lane of loose gravel through these work zones. All lanes will be open at night when crews are not working.

The following routes are planned to be sealcoated:

  • Idaho Highway 8 between Ruby Creek and Elk River: 10 miles starting July 25
  • Idaho Highway 7 between Orofino and Ahsahka: 4 miles starting July 31
  • Idaho Highway 11 between Greer and the top of the grade: 8 miles starting Aug. 1
  • Idaho Highway 64 between Kamiah and milepost 30.8: 4 miles starting Aug. 5
  • US-95 from Grangeville north to the concrete section: 12 miles starting Aug. 7
  • US-95 Cottonwood business loop: 2 miles starting Aug. 9
  • US-95 near Craigmont from Lauer Lane to Westlake Road: 2 miles starting August 12
  • US-95 passing lane in Culdesac Canyon at milepost 289: starting Aug. 13
  • US-95 between Lapwai and the Spalding Bridge: 4 miles starting Aug. 14
  • US-12 dike route in Lewiston: 2 miles starting Aug. 15

Note that dates and order of work are subject to change. Most sections will take two days or less to sealcoat.

Also called chip sealing, applying sealcoats protects the surface of the road and extends the lifespan of the pavement. A sticky slurry is sprayed on the road, rock chips are applied on top of the slurry and traffic compresses the chips into place for a long-lasting seal.

Reduced speeds are required on fresh sealcoats to prevent loose rocks from flying up. Following product application, work zones will be broomed off and restriped in groups, rather than one at a time.

Repairs to Greer Bridge begin next Monday

Repairs to the Greer Bridge will start Monday, July 22, with temporary signals impacting both Idaho Highway 11 and US-12 traffic until construction is complete in late September.

One lane at a time will be open over the bridge, and drivers may experience up to 15-minute delays.

This summer the driving surface will be improved, and supporting beams will be painted to protect them from rusting and to keep the bridge in service longer.

The structure was built in 1954.

To learn more about construction projects in your area, visit To find traveler information, visit

New turn lanes added to highways near Deary and Harvard starting July 22

Construction starts Monday, July 22 to add turn lanes to Idaho Highway 9 near Deary and Harvard this summer.

Both right- and left-turn lanes will be built on ID-6 to access ID-9 in Harvard, as well on ID-8 to access ID-9 in Deary.

Work will last until late September, with flaggers stationed at the intersections. One intersection at a time will be improved, and there will be no impacts at night when crews are not working.

To learn more about construction projects in your area, visit To find traveler information, visit

Transportation department seeks public comment on planned projects in North-Central Idaho

Two cranes help with 2019 construction of a passing lane in Culdesac Canyon just north of Winchester.

The Idaho Transportation Department is seeking public comment from July 2 – August 2 on the FY 2020-26 draft of the Idaho Transportation Investment Program (ITIP), and all transportation stakeholders are encouraged to participate.

The ITIP is a seven-year “roadmap” for planning and developing transportation projects, including:

  • Highways and bridges
  • Bicycle and pedestrian facilities
  • Highway safety
  • Railroad crossing safety
  • Airports
  • Public transportation
  • Transportation planning
  • Freight

The transportation department is offering an online, interactive map that allows users to choose specific project categories and learn about work that is planned for the area of Idaho they’re interested in. It’s called the Idaho Transportation Project Map.

View the draft ITIP and interactive map.

The draft ITIP document lists projects by highway route and location, identifies projected years for right-of-way acquisition, preliminary engineering, construction and estimated project costs. It also lists local construction projects that are federally funded.

The projects start in 2020, and go through 2026. Notable upcoming projects in North-Central Idaho include:

  • US-95 expansion between Thorncreek and Moscow beginning in 2020, pending land acquisition and a permit from the Army Corps of Engineers. More information is available at
  • US-95 expansion through Culdesac Canyon. Ongoing work will be followed with construction of the final two phases in 2023 to add a passing lane between Winchester and Culdesac. More information is available at
  • Portions of US-12 between Kooskia and Montana that were not addressed with 2018 construction will be resurfaced and possibly widened with the earliest project scheduled for 2022.

Public comments will help the department determine if proposed projects meet the department’s three main objectives of improving safety, mobility and economic opportunity.

Production of the ITIP is a year-round process that relies on input from elected officials, citizens, tribal governments, other state and federal agencies, Idaho’s metropolitan planning organizations, the Local Highway Technical Assistance Council, and other interested organizations.

Comments can be e-mailed to or mailed to ITIP – Comments, Attn: Adam Rush, P.O. Box 7129, Boise, ID  83707-1129. Paper or CD copies of the ITIP will be provided upon request by contacting Rush at (208) 334-8119 or by e-mail at

A request for a paper copy or CD also can be mailed to: Idaho Transportation Department, Adam Rush, P.O. Box 7129, Boise, ID  83707-1129.

A printed copy can be reviewed at any of ITD’s district offices in Coeur d’Alene, Lewiston, Boise, Shoshone, Pocatello and Rigby.

All comments on the draft will be reviewed after Aug. 2. After approval by the Idaho Transportation Board, the ITIP is submitted to the Federal Highway Administration, the Federal Transit Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency.

Extended closure on US-95 at Culdesac Canyon expected tonight

Photo of crane that fell June 29, 2019 while installing a temporary bridge for US-95 construction in Culdesac Canyon Phase 2.

Blasting and equipment removal are planned near ongoing work to add a passing lane in Culdesac Canyon on US-95, requiring intermittent, hours-long closures from 7 p.m. tonight to 4 a.m. tomorrow morning (July 2).

A blast is scheduled to start at 7 p.m., during which the road will be closed and not reopen until after debris is cleared, approximately 1.5 hours later.

Between 10 p.m. and 4 am, drivers can expect longer closures as crews remove a crane that fell Saturday afternoon onto US-95. Traffic will be allowed to pass around midnight, but between midnight and 4 a.m., drivers may not be able to pass through the area for up to three hours. No detours will be posted.

The crane fell while installing a temporary bridge. No one was injured during the incident, and crews were able to open US-95 to one lane later that afternoon.

Blasting operations are planned for the next two years in this area, with updates posted to and displayed on message signs near the project. Traffic impacts are not expected July 3-5, though crews will be working in the area.

US-95 White Bird Grade paving begins next week

Resurfacing of White Bird Grade on US-95 is planned to start next week, with work beginning as early as Monday, June 24.

More than seven miles of the south side of the grade will be paved, with one lane open in each direction until construction is completed in August.

Work is expected during the day, with some weekend shifts possible. Paving is expected to start at the top of the grade and progress downhill.

Three runaway truck ramps will also be improved, requiring temporary closures. Larger vehicles will be notified at the top of the hill if any ramps are closed before descending.

Earlier this year, crews updated guardrail and signage in the area. More information on construction projects is available at

ID-6 curve realignment near Potlatch begins next week

ID-6_Potlatch curves

Starting next week, contractors will begin constructing temporary lanes for a project to replace a bridge and realign curves on one mile east of Potlatch on Idaho Highway 6.

Work will start near Gold Creek as crews build temporary lanes around the existing structure to be used during its replacement. These temporary lanes will be in place from late June until the bridge is completed in late October.

Once the temporary lanes are completed, crews will start moving dirt for realignment of the highway. Work will progress from town towards the bridge, with most earthwork occurring off the existing road.

Speed will be reduced during construction due to trucks entering and exiting the highway and the temporary alignment over Gold Creek. Flaggers will periodically reduce the highway to one lane. Two lanes will be open outside of work hours.

Work to widen a sharp curve in Potlatch will begin in early October.  Drivers should expect only one lane with flaggers during the day and two lanes with gravel surfaces during non-working hours.

Construction is set to be complete by the end of October. Learn more at

Open house June 11 for Clearwater Memorial Bridge in Lewiston

US-12 crosses the Clearwater River.

The public is invited to an open house on Tuesday, June 11 to learn about plans to widen and repair the Clearwater Memorial Bridge.

The open house will be at the Red Lion Hotel (621 21st Street) from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Community members will have an opportunity to learn about the project, which is scheduled to start construction in 2023.

“The existing structure was built in 1951, and some of its components are nearing the end of their service life,” ITD project manager Curtis Arnzen said. “ITD is making major plans to improve the bridge to ensure that it will serve the region for many years into the future.”

Plans include widening the shoulders and sidewalks over the structure, as well as creating a wider median to divide lanes.

For more information and to comment online after the meeting, visit