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ITD presents plan for major upgrades to Pocatello area I-15

Big interstate upgrades could be coming to the Pocatello and Chubbuck area.

On Thursday the Idaho Transportation Department presented an interstate improvement plan to the public and asked for feedback.

ITD said the Pocatello and Chubbuck area is growing, and it’s already apparent there’s a heavy amount of traffic that can clog up some major thoroughfares.

“There’s going to be growth in this area. And as it grows the congestion at the Pocatello Creek interchange and Chubbuck interchange is only going to get worse. And the need is there,” ITD Project Manager Charlie Dietz said.

A new interchange would go up near Siphon road. The road would be extended east past the freeway and connect with Olympus road.

ITD said it could save people a lot of time and provide for some major economic development in the area.

“It’s going to have a very important impact on their lives when this does come. So their input and thoughts are very important to the Idaho Transportation Department to receive them,” Dietz said.

Crowds of locals came to check out the proposal and leave their thoughts about the interstate improvements.

“I live north, almost to the reservation. So an exit on the freeway by Siphon would cut my commute time in half,” Eddie Glines said.

But, Glines may have to wait a long time to get that shortened commute. The ITD study doesn’t guarantee funding or when the different aspects of the plan could start.

“These are just projections. There are no guarantees. But to complete the eight phases it might be as late as 2036,” Dietz said.

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