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Old Posted May 22, 2007, 4:56 PM
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Broadway Chinden Connector; A Brief History, lots o pics

For something that is so important to today's Boise, I found it odd that there is virtually no online history of the Broadway Chinden Connector. I took it upon myself to do a little research and post some of what I found. I tip my hat to the library personnel of the past for collecting these clippings. Thanks to those folks, the library has a folder of clippings going back to the early 70s. It's available on the 3rd floor for viewing only. I took pics of some of the better ones.

The project was fully opened on August 7, 1992. Prior to that, some sections were opened in phases. Thanks to one picture, I was reminded of something I had totally forgotten. For a while, inbound traffic diverted onto what is now the outbound lanes and exited at 23rd Street. IIRC, after that phase, inbound traffic had to exit at River Street. And on 8/7/92 traffic was allowed to travel through to 13th Street and all the way to Broadway.

Maybe the local TV stations could do a special using their archival video for the upcoming 15th anniversary!

When I get more time, I'll quote some of the articles. Some of the stuff I read made me laugh and some made me cry. I hope this info is useful or interesting to somebody, anybody. I really didn't give it the effort it deserves, but, as I always say, the pay here at SSP isn't very good.


The whole pile of clippings.


A nimby brochure from Aug 76.


Backside of same brochure.


April 78, It's amazing, some of the things said then are the same we hear now about other projects.


Skybridge? I hadn't ever heard of that one. Spokane envy, I guess.




Front could be Centennial Boulevard and Myrtle could be Park Boulevard.









Here's what used to be on Main Street at 30th and the river at 5pm. I think the word Fairview is a misprint.





Last edited by boisecynic; Nov 24, 2009 at 3:06 PM.
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  #2  
Old Posted May 22, 2007, 5:18 PM
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very interesting find, perhaps it is time for boise to do a connector down state street? what a mess
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  #3  
Old Posted May 22, 2007, 5:32 PM
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very interesting find, perhaps it is time for boise to do a connector down state street? what a mess
It would have to start or end at 32nd Street or that area. State Street past 27th into downtown is too residential and part of the Northend so that would not fly at all.


Great job Boisecynic. Was all of the landscaping completed right after the new connector was built? All of the greenery and shrubs, rose bushes, etc. really look nice.
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Old Posted May 22, 2007, 5:47 PM
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The landscaping was already in place through Curtis and the Fairview Flyover ramp, iirc. The landscaping at the "Chinden Interchange," I don't know. I think it's safe to assume the Chinden Interchange landscaping was done after August 1992.

I think the word connector has changed meanings. I think most of us mean all of 184 from the Wye to 13th Street. Technically, it means the Chinden interchange to Broadway. This is actually referenced in one of those clippings.

I left out some info assuming all who read this know about 184. 184 was built in its present alignment in the 60s to about Orchard. East of Orchard, all traffic routed inbound on Fairview and outbound on Main Street. After the B/C connector was built, the rest of 184 was widened from 2 lanes to 3 lanes each way. Then of course, there was the flying wye makeover, not that long ago. I'm having a hard time keeping all this straight. Once we can get all this correct and well written we could move it over to Wikipedia. Wikipedia has a little write-up, but it's not adequate, imo.

Last edited by boisecynic; May 22, 2007 at 6:30 PM.
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Old Posted May 22, 2007, 6:44 PM
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Nice effort Boisecynic.

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The landscaping at the "Chinden Interchange," I don't know. I think it's safe to assume the Chinden Interchange landscaping was done after August 1992.
Correct.
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Old Posted May 22, 2007, 9:05 PM
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Thanks for the trip down memory lane, boisecynic. I had forgotten how much coverage there was during the planning and construction phases of the B/C Connector. Seeing those articles again brings back many a memory.

I often wondered though, why the proposed skybridge to connect the 8th Street Marketplace (now BoDo) with The Grove was never built. It seemed like a good idea at the time. It would have eliminated the need for the current traffic signal at that location and would have made the whole 8th Street corrider more pedestrian/bicycle friendly.
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  #7  
Old Posted May 22, 2007, 9:18 PM
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Thanks for the trip down memory lane, boisecynic. I had forgotten how much coverage there was during the planning and construction phases of the B/C Connector. Seeing those articles again brings back many a memory.

I often wondered though, why the proposed skybridge to connect the 8th Street Marketplace (now BoDo) with The Grove was never built. It seemed like a good idea at the time. It would have eliminated the need for the current traffic signal at that location and would have made the whole 8th Street corrider more pedestrian/bicycle friendly.

I agree that a skybridge would have, or could still be, a good option for pedestrians, but those of us who bike would rather use a crosswalk to cross Front and Myrtle. A skybridge would mean lugging the bikes up and down each side of the street. I think the better option as a mountain biker is for a tunnel under Myrtle and Front, similar to the greenbelt tunnels.
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Old Posted May 22, 2007, 9:29 PM
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I think the better option as a mountain biker is for a tunnel under Myrtle and Front, similar to the greenbelt tunnels.
I agree with you 100%. Tunnels would be my preference as well.

Now if we could get somebody to cough up the funding...
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  #9  
Old Posted May 22, 2007, 9:32 PM
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Damn, I accidentaly put this post in my First Thursday thread because I was retrieving this pic:

But--

Here is a pic I had in my First Thursday thread which shows the crosswalk on Front Street between The Grove and BoDo. Myrtle has a similar one too.
The designer look creates more of a pedestrian friendly feel.


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Old Posted May 22, 2007, 9:43 PM
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That's nice, for a crosswalk.

It serves its purpose.

Still...a tunnel would eliminate the wait for pedestrians and vehicle traffic, and the potential for an accident.
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Old Posted May 22, 2007, 9:51 PM
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That's nice, for a crosswalk.

It serves its purpose.

Still...a tunnel would eliminate the wait for pedestrians and vehicle traffic, and the potential for an accident.

True, a tunnel would be preferred.
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  #12  
Old Posted May 23, 2007, 3:48 AM
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Or a skybridge. I wish somebody would built something for this spot.
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Old Posted May 24, 2007, 1:26 PM
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Thanks for the pic Sawtooth. I've found the 8th St crossings at Front and Myrtle work very well. One can also cross easily at 11th St and at 3rd St, although 3rd St does not have a light at Myrtle and it probably should since it is one of the entrances to Julia Davis Park.

Regarding the 8th St crossings, I am worried that someday a pedestrian or cyclist will be hit. The problem is jaywalkers or jay-cyclists impatiently cross against the light, myself included. This prompts others who aren't necessarily paying attention, into crossing thinking the light has changed.


From the Aug 76 green brochure:
Quote:
The proposed Chinden-Broadway corridor alternatives would have serious impacts on the Greenbelt, Boise River, and Ann Morrison and Julia Davis Parks because of increased traffic, noise and air pollution.
Serious impacts? All of those amenities seem in good shape to me despite 15 years of the Connector. Air pollution, this is something that can be best addressed at the Federal level.

They thought of every negative they could except one, the effect on Fairview/Main. Indeed, none of the clippings (I only skimmed some of them) mentioned anything about possible negative effects resulting from lessened traffic on Fairview/Main.

Last edited by boisecynic; May 24, 2007 at 1:48 PM.
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Old Posted May 24, 2007, 6:39 PM
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I think a vibrant city centre should give pedestrians and bikes the right of way and cars and traffic take a back seat to public transport. I agree that the connector would be much better if it was a tunnel and allowed for a pedestrian corridor.. but that didn't happen, and the costs associated with doing such a thing is just not legitimate. although, forcing people into sky bridges and tunnels and off the city streets causes a "mall" effect downtown. People are not out and about creating an urban living centre. I think that boise needs very quickly to update public transport. If it is too much of a mess to drive downtown because of pedestrians and bikers, then that is your sign to commute into the city via public transport. the city needs to step up to this and provide the network within the city centre, as well as connecting it out to the suburbs. just my two cents
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Old Posted Jul 30, 2007, 3:38 PM
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Sorry for digging up my own thread, but a week from tomorrow, Tue Aug 7th, is the 15th anniversary of the completion of the Broadway Chinden Connector, aka Front and Myrtle Streets plus I 184 from 13th to Chinden.
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  #16  
Old Posted Nov 22, 2009, 3:21 PM
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Bumping this thread for a couple of reasons.

1) Photobucket was on the verge of deleting my account due to inactivity.
2) One or two pics are hosted by tinypic and they get deleted if not hit in 6 months or a year.
3) Things are kind of slow with the Boise develoment scene.
4) JUMP is a continuation of the planning that gave rise to the connector.
5) Perhaps some new members or lurkers have never seen this.
6) Current opposition to the streetcar sounds much like 1970s opposition to the Connector. It's hard to imagine downtown now without the Connector and I think by most measures the Connector has been a great success.

Last edited by boisecynic; Nov 24, 2009 at 3:09 PM.
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Old Posted Jul 12, 2012, 8:43 PM
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Bumping thread:

Tuesday, August 7th, 2012, just 4 weeks away is the 20th anniversary of the completion of the Broadway/Chinden Connector part of which is also known as the Front/Myrtle Couplet. This road project entails nearly everything on the connector east of Orchard all the way to Broadway and includes the massive I-184 bridge over the Boise River that's between the old railroad trestle and Main Street.

Later projects connected it with ParkCenter via the West ParkCenter Bridge which alleviated a huge BSU bottleneck at Broadway and Beacon.

Last edited by boisecynic; Jul 13, 2012 at 1:57 PM.
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Old Posted Jul 13, 2012, 3:32 AM
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Pretty fun read. I had never seen this thread before. I can just never get over how far this city has grown in the last 20 years.
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Old Posted Jul 13, 2012, 3:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boisecynic View Post
Bumping thread:

Tuesday, August 7th, 2012, just 4 weeks away is the 20th anniversary of the completion of the Broadway/Chinden Connector part of which is also known as the Front/Myrtle Couplet. This road segment entails nearly everything on the connector east of Orchard all the way to Broadway and includes the massive I-184 bridge over the Boise River that's between the old railroad trestle and Main Street.

Later projects connected it with ParkCenter via the West ParkCenter Bridge which alleviated a huge BSU bottleneck at Broadway and Beacon.
Connector,
Happy 20th birthday! I love how easy you make it to drive from the west into downtown. Sure you're not perfect (you abrupty end with a well-patrolled 35 mph zone and a stoplight) but you're a lot better than using Fairview/Main! I'll bet downtown would have never become as vibrant as it would have without you. Can you imagine everyone after work squeezing onto main and using that one lousy lane to cross over to 184? When I bring visitors downtown, I purposely go a little out of my way to drive you because you give us one of the best vantage points of downtown highrises...

There was a time when the idea of you wasn't so popular, but the naysayers all quit once they got from downtown to curtis in 3 minutes instead of 15.

Here's to many many more years of you!

-Me
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  #20  
Old Posted Aug 9, 2012, 7:17 PM
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Aw crap, missed the anniversary. I wish one of the TV stations would dig up some video. As I remember it was on the news all the time when they were building it.
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