Three organizations are responsible for transportation and livability in downtown Boise: the Ada County Highway District (ACHD), the City of Boise, and the Capital City Development Corporation (CCDC), the downtown urban renewal agency. While these agencies often collaborate and cooperate, they also each have their own individual plans for project work, such as roadway improvements and maintenance (ACHD), utility work (City of Boise), streetscape and beautification projects (CCDC), and sidewalk and bicycle facility projects (any of the agencies). The result of this arrangement is that an individual street or area within the downtown may experience construction for one purpose, and after a short period of time, undergo work by another agency for a different purpose. This leads to repeated impacts to businesses and travelers within the downtown, as well as lost opportunities to combine work and achieve cost efficiencies.
In addition, the downtown core lacked a comprehensive and detailed bicycle network plan that all of the agencies together could work to implement as other roadway improvement and maintenance projects are being completed.
Kittelson worked collaboratively with the three agencies to bring their existing plans together and revise them into a consistent format that provides a complete, logical, and cost- and time-efficient approach to implementing projects in the downtown area. This led to the development of a 5 year consolidated and programmed implementation plan for roadway, utility, streetscape, and pedestrian/bicycle projects in downtown Boise.
Helping Agencies Help Each Other
Kittelson created a GIS database and plan, featuring easy-to-understand color-coded mapping, for the downtown area with the programmed list of improvements for each roadway/area including: street improvements, roadway maintenance, utility work, pavement rehabilitation, sidewalk improvements, bicycle facility improvements, streetscape/landscape improvements, as well as the funding and programming schedule for each improvement, as agreed to by the three partnering agencies.
This database now allows the three agencies to see and understand the full scope of work planned for a given roadway so that construction projects, schedules, and funding can be coordinated and efficiencies can be maximized. For example, the plan may show that on Jefferson Street in 2018, there will be a pavement overlay project (ACHD), a sewer replacement (City of Boise), and a sidewalk streetscape project (CCDC) construction that will need to be coordinated.