Here’s An Update On The Chinden Boulevard Road Widening
(photo by Phil Hoover)
The Northwest Meridian area is undergoing tremendous growth with new subdivisions, new homes, new schools, and new retail development.
The new Costco warehouse store, to be built at Chinden Boulevard/Ten Mile Road, will be a part of that growth.
The new Linder Village development, anchored by a Winco Foods supermarket, will be built at the corner of Chinden Boulevard and Linder Road.
The proposed Central Valley Plaza 71-acre development on Chinden Boulevard, near Highway 16, will be developed by Brighton Corporation and Ball Ventures Ahlquist.
Central Valley Plaza will include medical facilities, office space, retail space, and senior living facilities.
All of that means that already busy Chinden Boulevard, with its inadequate two traffic lanes, must be widened to accommodate the additional traffic generated by the above developments.
Most of the widening will be managed by the Idaho Transportation Depart (ITD).
That’s because Chinden Boulevard is actually State Highway 20/26; a state highway.
Chinden Boulevard will be widened to four lanes between Eagle Road and Highway 16, including a sidewalk on the south side of the road.
During the Chinden Boulevard widening project, some segments will be reduced to a single lane of traffic.
Most of the construction will be completed in 2020.
The developers of both the Costco store and Linder Village have agreed to pay for portions of widening Chinden Boulevard as a condition of their approvals.
ITD is also working on plans to extend Highway 16 from Chinden Boulevard to I-84.
That project is in its early stages and will require more time and funding to be completed.
Here’s a summary of the Chinden Boulevard road widening schedule:
Planning and design.
Widen Chinden Boulevard between Eagle Road and Highway 16, except for Locust Grove Road to Meridian Road.
Widen Chinden Boulevard from Locust Grove Road to Meridian Road.
This segment of the road widening will be done after the rest of the widening project to allow developers to pay their portion of the construction costs from expected revenue cash flows.
Meridian City Council member Genesis Milam, during a March 12th city council meeting, was quoted as saying that the widening project “just looks like it will be hell in both directions”.
(at least we know what she was really thinking!)
Jake Melder, ITD spokesperson, has been quoted as saying that widening Chinden Boulevard “will be like ripping off a Band-Aid”.
I expect Jake’s prediction to be proven accurate; albeit relatively short-lived.
Sometimes, progress includes some pain along the way.
Those planning to navigate Chinden Boulevard during the widening project should consider alternative routes, including McMillan and Ustick Roads.
Highway 16 and Highway 44 already provide a convenient shortcut to Eagle that bypasses the Chinden Boulevard corridor.
When the project is completed, it will be well worth it!
Northwest Meridian is rapidly becoming the epicenter of planned growth in our area.