The Ada County Highway District has begun an initiative to begin measuring pedestrian and bicycle performance. Last Wednesday (Jan. 13), ACHD Planning Manager Ryan Head provided the ACHD Commission with an information briefing.
This effort is at the direction of the ACHD Commission as they seek to ensure ACHD is providing a transportation network for all people regardless of how they get around. For many years, ACHD has used different performance measures to determine the need and type of bike and pedestrian facilities to be placed on the roadway. This effort will help evaluate how well the facilities that have been implemented work for those who chose to walk or bike.
Initially, the District is beginning to determine what it is that these metrics are intending to measure, including capacity, safety, quality of the facility, the appropriateness of the facility for the location, and the comfort of the user.
While there are only a handful of models out there that are currently measuring these metrics for pedestrians and cyclists, ACHD staff plan to adopt elements of these plans that are deemed appropriate for ACHD purposes to create our own plan for Ada County.
The metrics will be used to help with prioritization of projects, in project design, and for the Capital Improvements Plan, ACHD’s 20-year planning document.
The team is made up of members from the Planning Department, Traffic Department, Capital Projects, Design, Development Services, and Communications. Recommendations on the plan will also be sought from the Pedestrian Advisory Group, the Bicycle Advisory Committee, and the A.D.A. Committee.
A consultant, Alta Planning + Design, has been selected. Presently, the team is fact-finding—establishing the purpose and need of the initiative, reviewing alternative approaches, and selecting a recommended approach. This process will last through March. In April, the team will come back before the ACHD Commission for approval of the selected approach and the implementation process. From that point through the fall, the team will review implementation tools and policies, and review and assess the impact of the project.