Kootenai County partners with ITD to build new path along US-95

US-95 Path

Kootenai County signed a maintenance agreement yesterday with the Idaho Transportation Department to maintain a multi-use path that will extend along 19 miles of US-95 in northern Idaho.

Per the agreement, ITD will reconstruct approximately eight miles of the existing path along the highway from Appleway Avenue to Garwood Road during the summer of 2019. The department will also construct a new path from Garwood Road north to the county line, with construction anticipated in 2020 and 2021.

The entire path will cost $3.2 million to rebuild and construct out to the county line. The county will receive $50,000 from ITD to help with future maintenance responsibilities.

Funds to reconstruct the existing path will come from a $5.1 million FASTLANE grant, which was awarded to ITD and the Kootenai Metropolitan Planning Organization in October 2016 to optimmize the US-95 corridor. To enhance mobility and safety through the corridor, grant funding will also be used to achieve uniform signal spacing, which will require the addition and elimination of some signals.

As ITD continues to design projects to expand US-95 to four lanes, the trail could be extended north to Sagle. The department is currently working with local jurisdictions to construct a new path from the Kootenai County line to Trails End Road in Bonner County as part of future improvements.

State code prevents the department from building paths without first finding local jurisdictions committed to maintaining them. The trail between Appleway Avenue and Garwood Road, which was built in the 1980s, predates this policy.

The agreement with the county eliminates the department’s last path to maintain in the state.