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Time ticking on Post Falls URD

by MADISON HARDY
Staff Writer | December 18, 2020 1:00 AM

POST FALLS — As the East Post Falls Urban Renewal District comes to a close, city staff and Council reviewed five potential projects to finish before Dec. 31, 2022.

The Post Falls Urban Renewal Agency uses the property taxes generated by new construction within the URD area to finance public improvements.

Post Falls City Administrator Shelly Enderud presented outstanding projects the council could choose to complete with the district’s $4.5 million to $5 million remaining budget with only two years left.

Selected for their priority and potential completion time, the projects include Seltice Way from Ross Point Road to Cedar Street, and roadway improvements on Highway 41 and 16th, Cecil Road and Poleline Road, Mullan Avenue at Cecil Road, and the 12th Avenue Lift Station.

The Seltice Way improvements, estimated at $1.7 million, from Ross Point Road to Cedar Street are mainly for aesthetic, functionality, and safety provisions and completion of unfinished auxiliaries.

“As you come from Coeur d’Alene into Post Falls, that is our gateway corridor,” Enderud said. “The area from Cedar Street to Ross Point quite frankly is very underdeveloped. There is no sidewalk, and the streets are not complete.”

Just under $2 million could also go toward Highway 41 improvements at the 16th Avenue and Poleline Avenue intersections and a multi-use path on the west side. Since 2002, commercial development has peaked along the highway, including Post Falls’ future tech park and retail site at Prairie Avenue.

At the two intersections — 16th Avenue and Poleline Road — funding for potential infrastructure has yet to be allocated, Enderud said. While they were previously considered for the city’s construction plan, impact fee revenue has been delayed by COVID.

Now, the city is looking for alternative funding sources to assist with implementing the Idaho Transportation Department-installed traffic signals in either 2021 or 2022.

Between $1.3 million and $1.5 million could be allocated to the signals and frontage improvements project along Cecil Road and Poleline Avenue to improve walkability and safety near schools.

The last two projects for consideration are:

• The $110,000 Mullan Avenue project would add a center island curb and turn lanes near Walmart to increase safety and mitigate traffic.

• A $535,000 design reimbursement for the 12th Avenue Lift Station would allow the city to contribute the collected funds to the pressurized sewer pipe that converts wastewater to the Post Falls Water Reclamation Facility.

The Post Falls City Council will review the five possible projects before staff returns next year.