- Project development consists of three distinct, but highly integrated processes that must all be satisfied before construction can begin.
- The environmental process consists of evaluating alternatives in light of mandated requirements stipulated by the National Environmental Policy Act.
- A proposed alternate cannot be selected until the environmental process is satisfied.
- The right-of-way portion consists of evaluating the right-of-way needs for the selected alternative, the preparation of right-of-way plans, and the acquisition of right-of-way.
- The design portion consists of evaluating alternatives based on functionality, designing improvements based on state and federal guidelines, and preparing plans and specifications.
The Idaho Transportation Department continues to move forward with plans for the U.S. 95, Thorncreek Road to Moscow Project.
The final eastern route (E2) for the highway was chosen after a multi-year environmental review process. The Federal Highway Administration issued a Record of Decision (ROD) for the project in 2016, giving ITD authority to begin final design and purchase land.
A legal motion was brought against FHWA and ITD in 2017 regarding the Environmental Impact Statement and Record of Decision. The U.S. District Court for Idaho ruled against the motion in favor of FHWA and ITD in August 2017.
Project opposition appealed that decision in January 2018. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld the lower court’s decision on December 7, 2018.
ITD will continue right-of-way acquisition and submit a 404 permit application with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. After those two steps are completed, the project can be put out for construction bids. Work could begin as early as late summer 2019.
Please call Ken Helm at (208)799-5090 if you have any questions about the project.