Monday, May 4, 2009

The Orchard Interchange

There was a letter published today in the Idaho Daily Statesman that complained that ACHD was rebuilding the Orchard interchange and doing away with "unencumbered right hand turn lanes". I read it as doing away with right hand turn lanes period, which is not that farfetched since a lot of new intersections on Fairview don't have right hand turn lanes. In checking on this however, I found out a number of things.

First, this is an ITD project under the GARVEE scheme so ACHD doesn't have anything to do with the construction or the design. You can blame ACHD for a lot, but not this construction project.

Second, there will still be right hand turn lanes, you'll just have to stop if there's a red light and then you can go right on red. This was the big issue for me. A right hand turn lane should NEVER be done away with, and in this case it wasn't. And at new intersections, a right hand turn lane should ALWAYS be installed, which in this case it is.

Third, the stacking lane for the right turn will be longer so that more cars can be accomodated and hopefully not stuck behind cars that want to go straight.

This may not be exactly what the letter writer wants, but it is not a stupid design.


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