The Idaho Transportation Department has just sent out a news release saying the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) approved the new interchange on Interstate 90 at Beck Road in Post Falls. Final approval of the Interchange Justification Report (IJR) hinges on completion of all environmental work for the project.
The IJR recommends a new standard diamond interchange that would accommodate pedestrians and bicyclists and improves traffic operations.
The project is the first in Idaho to use the State Tax Anticipation Revenue (STAR) program to finance a highway improvement project. The Idaho Legislature approved the STAR program in 2007. The program compensates developers who pay for interchanges or highway improvements that access new commercial/retail complexes.
The developer and its consulting engineering firm still must complete an Environmental Assessment and receive approval for a "Finding of No Significant Impacts." Once the environmental process is complete and approved, work will begin on design and construction of the interchange.
When completed, the state will assume control over maintenance and operation of the facility.