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Broadway Bridge closure will change traffic

Posted at 2:59 PM, Dec 31, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-31 16:59:40-05

Starting on Monday, January 4th, commuters will have to figure out ways to navigate downtown Boise without the Broadway Bridge.

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More than 26,000 cars cross the Broadway bridge everyday.'
 
Now, those cars are going to have to find another way around.
 
As of Monday, it will be closed to all traffic, as construction on the bridge will start. 
 
They are taking the four lane bridge that's there now, and completely demolishing it. They will be constructing a new, more traffic efficient bridge.
 
"The new bridge will have three lanes on either side, full bike lanes, and sidewalks on either side of the bridge," said Jennifer Gonzalez of the Idaho Transportation Department.
 
Building the new structure will take time; nine months to be exact.
 
By doing it now they are taking advantage of low water levels, and they will have it done before bronco football season starts.
 
"What that means for motorists is that from Cesar Chavez Lane to Myrtle Street it is a full closure. Motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians they will be needing to rely on our detour routes that are in place," said Gonzalez.
 
The detour route will be from Park Center to Beacon Street.
 
As people adjust to the new traffic pattern, traffic is likely to be hectic. 
 
Many business owners in the area, like Jim Steward of Extreme Pizza said they are not sure exactly what to expect come Monday.
 
"I'm a little bit nervous. I think it will effect us," said Steward. "A lot of our business is delivery so we are looking at longer delivery times and increased traffic."
 
But, he said he thinks his customers will understand.
 
"We usually get our deliveries out fast so if we have to overstaff a little bit more we will do that," said Steward.
Jana of Jana's Hair Cuttin' Store is a little farther down Broadway.
 
She's been in that location for 27 years now. 
 
She said she isn't really worried.
 
"I don't think it's going to effect us too much down this far, so I think they will find us. I am just going to hope for the best and grit my teeth and see what happens. there is not much I can do," said Jana.
 
Many of the businesses in the area said the same thing.
 
They just want to remind customers that throughout the construction, their doors will be open.
 
"There is nine people that work here. We will be open regardless," said Jana. 
 
Drivers are urged to slow down, pay attention, and leave with plenty of time to make it to your destination.