Ada County Highway District

ACHD's Road Wizard Sunday, May 7, 2017 ACHD's Road Wizard

Reader suggests changes to deal with soccer-game congestion at Simplot Sports Complex and Lake Forest Drive; sweeper trucks continue to visit bike lanes on Five Mile Road and Emerald Street; "Tell Us" no longer an email service but now an online form

The Road Wizard Replies

Dear Road Wizard: My family and I have spent the past few weekends at soccer games at Simplot Sports Complex. The big traffic backups occur at Yamhill Road and Lake Forest Drive as cars come in from Federal Way, while others exit from the nearby sports complex parking lot onto Lake Forest. The exit is essentially a blind left turn due to the curve of Lake Forest and the cars parked along the road. Roundabouts would be perfect in both of those intersections. Cars would naturally slow as they entered and the traffic wouldn't back up. The soccer families of the valley and residents of Columbia Village would surely favor a change. Is traffic improvement in that area a focus of ACHD?


Road Wizard:

Soccer takes over this part of Boise every spring and fall with families coming in and out of the sports complex, particularly on Saturdays. But when the last goal is kicked for the season, things quiet down.

ACHD's focus is on projects that help improve roads where people experience daily travel headaches. Traffic issues around the sports complex have to do with temporary events, so building permanent roundabouts at the Lake Forest locations isn't a high priority. Roundabouts have a standard design that doesn't come cheap and building them would probably require using private property and Simplot Sports Complex land.

The exit from the complex is not a public street, so it isn't subject to the same sight distance requirements as public road intersections. It's tough to see oncoming traffic, but doable by carefully creeping forward to get a better view. Removing parking would make that easier, but I wouldn't expect many families to favor that change since parking is already at a premium during soccer games.

Dear Road Wizard: The north and south bike lanes on Five Mile Road between Victory Road and Emerald Street need to be swept. Debris in the lanes cause hazardous riding conditions requiring constant swerving into traffic lanes. It's the same for the Emerald bike lanes from Five Mile Road to Americana Boulevard. Heavy debris inflicts severe tire damage, resulting in loss of control and a near collision with motor vehicles in the traffic lanes.


Road Wizard:

Bike lanes are tough because much of the loose material on roads gets pushed to the side by motor vehicle traffic. ACHD sent a crew back to both Five Mile and Emerald again Monday. For those in other areas waiting for more sweeping, keep in mind that the recent rain has delayed crews.

Dear Road Wizard: What? Why did "The Road Wizard" in the paper show the address "" as how to contact ACHD with our feedback? Nice way to not get any feedback or emails.


Road Wizard:

For many years, ACHD had the "Tell Us" email address available so people could offer questions and feedback. Tell Us still exists, but it's an online form instead of an email address. The old address was printed last week in error, and anyone still using it will get a notice of the change.

Keeping track of the emails, gathering information from the various ACHD staff members, and being sure all of the emails were answered was practically a full-time job. The form version of Tell Us will make the process a little easier for ACHD employees. Of course, people can still contact the Road Wizard by email.

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