ACHD Commishes Don’t Sit On The Fence

When it comes to taking a position on college students playing in traffic on Capitol Blvd. Ada County Highway District Commishes don’t sit on the fence–they build one.

Despite opposition from Boise City, ACHD will soon begin installing a four foot wrought iron fence in the median of Capital Blvd. in the area of Boise State University where students habitually dash out into traffic or weave their way through stopped cars on a daily basis.
capitol jaywalk
The problem became critical with the completion of about 1500 apartment units in the “Lusk Neighborhood” west of Capitol. A little known part of the bid on the new one block extension of Royal Blvd. between 8th and Capitol was the fence. It was recommended by ACHD staffers for several years.

The ACHD commishes also requested that Boise coppers enforce the J-walking ordinance. If the ordinance is unclear, then Boise city councilors need to clarify the law to include the area near BSU.

The GUARDIAN would like to see the fence expanded south of University up Depot Hill where bicyclists and pedestrians also dash across multiple lanes of traffic and the median on their way to higher education.


Comments & Discussion

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  1. A very good fence and recommendation by Dave.

  2. Ever heard of Frogger or Crossy Roads? This is the human version of it being conducted by the UI Pokemon 101 class. They needed some test subjects, so they thought BSU would kindly lend a hand.

    Traffic safety involves 4 E’s….ACHD is doing the Engineering because Boise is not doing the enforcement when really both of them should be doing the Education and Encouragement.

    This BG article may be a first. Congrats on the embedded video!

  3. Capitol Driver
    Aug 25, 2016, 12:26 pm

    Thank you ACHD! I have had – and witnessed – many near misses because of students running between cars across Capitol. Despite numerous calls to BSU and BPD, nothing was done. Glad ACHD has provided a solution!

  4. Why would Boise City oppose this fence? I would think that it would be in the best safety interest of all users, drivers, students, Boise Police Department. Does nearby St. Luke’s Hospital emergency department have an opinion?

    The Greenbelt tunnels under the roadway will get more use and more frequent use by the BSU students. Just a slightly longer walk.

    BSU may find that they will need to pay for a subway system to shuttle students if this causes pushback from the student-tenants in their leased buildings.

    Oh Well, the Public Trough is very deep.

  5. Maybe they should put a pedestrian crossing bridge if the jaywalking occurs around the same place?

  6. ACHD had a chance to fix that mess back in the early 90s with the CUB interchange (Capitol, University, Boise Ave.). Google it. For some reasons unknown to me they dropped the project. One reason I do recall, nimbys at the intersection of University and Capitol adamantly opposed it. Frustratingly, of the 4 corners, only Papa Joe’s remains from the 90s. I can’t remember if Papa Joe’s was one of the opposition.

    Anyway, jaywalking isn’t just on Capitol, it’s Broadway and all over downtown. And they’re becoming more blatant. I hate to see BPD start enforcing it, because I do it too, but I actually look before I jaywalk.

    Look at the Saturday market. I can’t believe grown adults need crossing guards, but they do.

  7. This has been a problem for many many years
    Aug 25, 2016, 5:25 pm

    There is a tunnel under the bridge, but the women don’t like it and it also sometimes harbors the local bums. The tunnel also floods with high water. An overpass bridge is needed.

    Thank Goodness for German brakes on my car or I would have been jailed by the local lynch mob for running over some high-IQ dumbass on this road. 4 ft is not tall enough, and it needed to be a mile long.

    EDITOR NOTE–Perhaps Trump will build it and get BSU to pay for it! 🙂

  8. Mark Thompson
    Aug 26, 2016, 10:17 am

    Video needs Frogger music mixed in.

    If this is a big enough issue to need a solution, then one of the potential solutions that should be on the table should be a pedestrian stoplight.

    EDITOR NOTE–Based on the new image, it appears there is nothing left on the table to discuss. The fence is nearly completed.

  9. Rod in SE Boise
    Aug 26, 2016, 1:31 pm

    Timberline High is back in session and a fence is needed there also.

  10. Previously ACHD added a cross walk for County employees crossing 3rd street… literally feet away from 2 normal working crosswalks. C. Baker was in BIG support of installing that crosswalk.

    Previously ACHD installed what has to be the stupidest and most dangerous crosswalks in the county, for St. Luke’s employees to cross Idaho Street & Warm Springs instead of directing employees to cross at the existing 1st Street crosswalk.

    ACHD is inconsistent with their installation of crosswalks to say the least: around schools, around popular areas, and new construction.

    Then when someone gets killed, they they do something about it- even then they are inconsistent and hose it up such as the crosswalks on ParkCenter Blvd after a couple was killed in 2008.
    No standard policy.

    BPD enforcing jaywalking? Right. Hello, Downtown, is that you?

    Nope. It’s gonna take a dead frog!

  11. Foothills Rider
    Aug 26, 2016, 4:11 pm

    …same fencing just went up middle of dogbone round-about at Hill and 36th; not seen in original plans. Kids still short-cutting to the center, walking around the fence, and getting to their destinations. Walkways and ped traffic poorly thought out at that project. Only recently did ACHD learn they had forgotten to consider ped traffic northbound 36th. They just installed a bridge and railings also not originally in the plan to cover the issue. ACHD seems to design in a vacuum.

  12. Speckled Hen
    Aug 26, 2016, 4:59 pm

    The irony is that there are much more deadly and dangerous roads like Fairview where the motoring equivalent of a fence (e.g. a median) is a non-starter in the eyes of ACHD and others who say they are all about safety. Why are they willing to shut down pedestrians moving freely while vehicles are allowed to move unabated across roads and driveways throughout the Valley?

  13. Stupid as they (achd) are, it is on us to drive safely.
    Aug 26, 2016, 9:40 pm

    I hope that there is enforcement at these sites and that the jaywalkers and the children who are also jaywalking are dealt with. I only hope someone is not killed and that I don’t witness it and I am never involved. Inconsistent types of roads and road policies in my opinion indicate a lack of leadership on the part of the neighborhoods, schools, and citizens, and a lack of leadership on the part of the the achd, city and parents. Politically they cannot hear each other.

  14. Eliminate cars from the entire downtown area. This would solve thousands of problems at once. Cars are the problem, walking and biking is the solution.

  15. Yossarian_22
    Aug 27, 2016, 10:18 am

    There is a BPD station at the old restaurant building at the old Capitol Inn (?). They patrol the Lusk apartment complex area. The traffic generated by those apartments is staggering. And half or more of them are still vacant! I performed parking enforcement for 3 of those apartment complexes last year. Speeding and jaywalking abound. I approve of the fences as well. If enough students fill all those apartments, they will need a pedestrian bridge, in my view.

    EDITOR NOTE–We stopped by that “station” and coppers refused to talk. We were directed to a phone at the front door with a button to push for dispatch which would supposedly send a car to discuss jaywalking. That “station” is not really a station, but is funded by housing funds. About 400 yards across the street at Boise Ave and University is yet another “station” but that one is funded by BSU for campus police. Lots of cops, but little to no public access.

  16. Jay Walker, haha, not sure if you’re serious or not. Eliminating cars downtown would indeed solve the walking problem because 90%+ of the people walking around downtown GOT THERE BY CAR.

    Speckled Hen, ACHD did want to put medians on Fairview, the business owners cried foul. Boise business owners think Boiseans are too lazy to go up a ways and make a u-turn.

  17. Yossarian_22
    Aug 28, 2016, 4:40 pm

    Hmmn….it sounds like police stations are now more like garrisoned barracks. Maybe there’s a credit card slot that we are supposed to use to get in. A dystopian pay to be heard world. Might wanna bring that up at a city council meeting, unless those are now pay to play, too.

  18. The problem I have (and probably the city’s as well) with the pedestrian fence is it’s the explicitly “auto-oriented” solution. People are going where you don’t want them to, at the expense of auto traffic? Build a barrier. Maybe we should be asking why there’s a 6-lane highway dividing two relatively pedestrian friendly areas. The construction of additional apartments didn’t create this problem, it simply made it more visible.

    Consider looking at it this way – the greenbelt underpass is actually quite far away, adding say ~5 minutes to your walk, similar to the University crossing (a ridiculous 4-stage crossing). You can argue that 5 minutes here and there doesn’t matter since they’re walking anyway, but the same argument (minutes of delay!) is used to spend millions on road construction & widening, or to prevent stop bike lanes & pedestrian crossings from going in (if I remember, one of the arguments against the protected bike lane demonstration in 2014 was the additional seconds of delay).

    This is the reason why people jaywalk – because we build bad pedestrian infrastructure or have points of bad connectivity, and people logically take shortcuts. Most of the time, the shortcut works, and occasionally, tragically, it doesn’t. All the education & enforcement in the world isn’t going to stop this, it never has (this applies to to auto traffic, as well). The Engineering needs to be better and more appropriately applied, especially in an already pedestrian heavy area. Perhaps an additional signal could be installed, at Sherwood, or Island, or both? The spacing there isn’t too different from the downtown block spacing, and that works well enough for everyone.

  19. “build a wall” oh wait, thats another story. In this case, build a bridge. Could it BE any simpler?

  20. If people want to play in traffic let them. Seems like this is a self resolving problem…

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