DECLO, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) - Changes are in the works to modernize the Interstate 84/Interstate 86 interchange.
"What started this project was a need to replace the two bridges that carry I-86 over I-84," said Nathan Jerke of the Idaho Transportation Department.
Constructed in the mid-1960s, the ITD created final designs for their next major project, which should improve the roads to accommodate today's traffic.
"We have higher speeds that people are driving as well as need for longer ramps," said Jerke.
There's also a need to clarify the setup of the junction to minimize confusion for travelers.
"We've had a lot of complaints where people continue eastbound towards Pocatello (when they're headed to Salt Lake)," he continued. "We're adding additional lanes for I-84 traffic so it'll truly feel like you're staying on I-84 as you travel eastbound and going south towards Salt Lake."
They plan to remove the bridges in that area and build new ones in another.
"As you're heading northwest to Boise, you'll go under a new bridge structure and then you'll go under another later bridge that loops around from Pocatello towards Salt Lake," he pointed out on one of the designs.
Estimated at $20 million, they expect changes in traffic without major detours besides when it comes to bridge construction.
"Traffic that's trying to go on I-86 eastbound toward Pocatello, they will have to take a detour down to Yale Road interchange 8 miles south," he added.
Once started, it will take 18–24 months to complete.
"Hopefully with luck, we are able to have this advertised for bid sometime early next year," he said.