SMITHS FERRY, Idaho — After weeks of closure due to construction, roadwork and a rock slide, Idaho State Highway 55 north of Smiths Ferry will reopen to traffic at 12:00 p.m. on Dec. 6, according to a press release from the Idaho Transportation Department.
ITD says travelers should be prepared to confront 15-minute delays in the area, as crews will prepare for winter construction and roadwork the rest of the week.
"The Department thanks the traveling public, Valley County residents, and the business community for their support and patience, as our crews worked tirelessly to stabilize this slide,"said ITD Engineering Manager, Jason Brinkman. "We know it’s been a long closure, but we have taken extensive steps to ensure safe travel through the work zone this winter."
According to ITD, the Nov. 18 rockslide comprised more than 50,000 cubic yards of large boulders and dirt which slid onto the roadway. ITD says construction crews built a 20-foot tall and 400-foot long rock wall to stabilize the area, and are ready to open an interim road around the slide. Geotechnical experts have since inspected the slide area and the contractor hired by ITD has since completed the repairs to open the road for winter.
In the press release, ITD maintained that US-95 still remains a viable route for travel between Valley County and the Treasure Valley. If you would like to remain updated on the progress of the Highway 55 construction, you can head to the ID-55 Smiths Ferry project's website, or visit Idaho 511 for more information on the latest highway conditions.