The objective to this project is to prepare Bench Boulevard to carry arterial traffic from Mary Street, at the northern extreme of the Heights, through the Metra property, to access Sixth Avenue North at the Main Street intersection.
The 2000 Transportation Plan identifies the development of Bench Boulevard as the highest priority and best alternative to provide relief for the Main Street traffic congestion. During the design phase, there will be a criteria to comply with Federal Aid Funding.
This will include:
Archaeological and historical surveys
Public hearing process for the location
Design of the facilities
The major factor in the timing will likely be the public demand, or lack of demand, to invest in the improvements. The balance of the corridor must be developed to arterial standards as opportunity occurs and capital improvement funding becomes available.
Current Project Information
Status: The first phase of construction is being administered by the Montana Department of Transportation and is currently underway.Riverside has been contracted to build a bridge across Alkali Creek and reconstruct the frontage road adjacent to the Metra.The project will also include a "slip-lane" which allows left-turning traffic from 4th Avenue North to directly access the newly constructed Bench Boulevard.Construction is scheduled to be complete this fall.The design for the next phases (Lincoln Lane to Hilltop Road and Hilltop Road to Highway 87) are underway.
Proposal: The CIP proposal includes the funding needed to match the MACI grant during the project development stages and to address arterial widening support to projects of opportunity.
Cost: The Bench Connection project is estimated to cost $6 million. Developing the entire corridor to arterial standards is estimated to cost an additional $5 million.
Funding: The MACI funding allocation is $6 million to be matched by local funding on an 87/13 percent basis.