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Big Changes For Fred Meyer Lot, INL Commute

There are some big changes in store for the old Fred Meyer site at Anderson Street and Yellowstone Highway, and they’ll affect Idaho National Lab commuters.

Construction has broken through the quiet air at the Yellowstone Square development. The former grocery store site is well on its way to welcoming a few new residents: INL commuter buses.

Commuters can expect to start meeting at the park and ride in the mornings before their commute to work. Service to most regularly scheduled sites on the INL bus routes will be discontinued sometime after mid-September.

Not everyone is welcoming the change. INL bus driver Jon Eaton said his passengers are not looking forward to the extra commute to and from the park and ride site.

?It’s quite an inconvenience for them,? he said. ?They’re used to the system … the way it’s been for the last approximately 30 or 40 years.?

An inconvenience or not, the change is coming. The lot is beefing up with freshly paved entrances from Anderson, Yellowstone and Hemmert Ave.

Two other stops ? one at Calvary Chapel on Hitt Road and another gravel parking lot and stop at West Broadway, will remain operational. INL Director of Integrated Transportation Scott Wold said the changes won’t affect everyone.

?It’s only for the BEA and CWI employees,? he said. ?There’s about 11-hundred passengers on a typical day for that. We have another service for the Naval Reactors facility. That’s a totally separate contract. … Those routes will still run through town.?

In addition to Naval Reactor passengers, INL commuters who ride out of the Blackfoot and Upper Valley stops will not be affected. Pocatello has already transitioned to a pack and ride system for site employees.

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