Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Ketchum supports pathways plan

Countywide document aims to link municipalities


By AMY BUSEK
Express Staff Writer

    A visionary document linking countywide transportation infrastructure, called the Blaine County Bike and Pedestrian Master Plan, received support from the Ketchum City Council on Monday. It was presented by working group member Jason Miller of Mountain Rides Transportation Authority.
    The plan, finalized in June, focuses on pathways that connect Blaine County municipalities and proximal recreational opportunities. Passing the resolution of support Monday, Miller said, was “step one” toward actualization. The next step is finding representatives from individual cities to join the working group, he said.
    “It’s a collaborative working group that makes it happen,” he said.
    Representatives on the master plan’s working group include Blaine County, the Blaine County Recreation District, Mountain Rides, St. Luke’s Center for Community Health, the Wood River Bicycle Coalition and the cities of Bellevue, Hailey, Ketchum and Sun Valley.
    The groups listed also provided much of the funding; minutes from an April 2013 County Commission meeting indicated the cost of the master plan would be about $15,000.
    The master plan addresses the positive effects of a seamless bike and pedestrian travel route in Blaine County though economic, health and community building lenses.
    Immediate needs for cyclists and pedestrians, according to the plan, are more connections between different locales and attractions, including the Wood River Trail through Ketchum and the trail’s end at Hulen Meadows to the Sawtooth National Recreation Area headquarters. Safety is another necessity for a streamlined transportation system, supporters say, and the plan addresses pedestrian crossings in downtown Ketchum and bike/road sharing on Fourth Street not being wide enough for cyclists. Consistency in design is another focus—“sharrows” are road markings delineating a shared space for bicyclists and drivers and they differ in appearance within Hailey, for example. The final need addressed is amenities: more restrooms on the pathway, parking areas at trailheads and improving the surface of the Harriman Trail are some of the suggestions.
    The plan offers suggestions for bike lanes, shared lanes, bike boxes and separate pathway options for cities to implement. The working group took inspiration for successful road design and signage from other Idaho and U.S. municipalities in their recommendations: the signage used in Boulder, Colo., for example, provides better orientation and direction for motorists and cyclists separately than the wayfinding signage in Ketchum.
    Recommended improvements to the north valley include both initial and ultimate improvement options to give cities the option of prioritization. There are projects suggested for and between individual municipalities—improvements to Ketchum’s Fourth Street, a circuitous connection between River Run and Warm Springs and fixing missing sidewalk links downtown are among the recommendations.
    In Sun Valley, the working group recommends Trail Creek Path improvements, better bike and pedestrian connections to the Community School and crosswalks on Dollar Road.
    The end of the plan evaluates the projects for all four municipalities in order of urgency in terms of connecting missing links, safety and community desire. The group surveyed citizens to determine what the majority deemed most important.
    Improving Broadford Road between Hailey and Bellevue was more popular than every other suggestion at the working group’s mobile workshops—it currently is narrow and has a rough grade, the plan indicates.
    Online surveys pointed toward the necessity of connecting the Wood River Trail and the Harriman Trail and bettering sidewalk conditions in Ketchum and Sun Valley.
    View the master plan in its entirety on the Ketchum City website, www.ketchumidaho.org.
Amy Busek: abusek@mtexpress.com




About Comments

Comments with content that seeks to incite or inflame may be removed.

Comments that are in ALL CAPS may be removed.

Comments that are off-topic or that include profanity or personal attacks, libelous or other inappropriate material may be removed from the site. Entries that are unsigned or contain signatures by someone other than the actual author may be removed. We will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or any other policies governing this site. Use of this system denotes full acceptance of these conditions. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions. You are fully responsible for the content that you post.

The comments below are from the readers of mtexpress.com and in no way represent the views of Express Publishing, Inc.

You may flag individual comments. You may also report an inappropriate or offensive comment by clicking here.

Flagging Comments: Flagging a comment tells a site administrator that a comment is inappropriate. You can find the flag option by pointing the mouse over the comment and clicking the 'Flag' link.

Flagging a comment is only counted once per person, and you won't need to do it multiple times.

Proper Flagging Guidelines: Every site has a different commenting policy - be sure to review the policy for this site before flagging comments. In general these types of comments should be flagged:

  • Spam
  • Ones violating this site's commenting policy
  • Clearly unrelated
  • Personal attacks on others
Comments should not be flagged for:
  • Disagreeing with the content
  • Being in a dispute with the commenter

Popular Comment Threads



 Local Weather 
Search archives:


Copyright © 2019 Express Publishing Inc.   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy
All Rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of Express Publishing Inc. is prohibited. 

The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.