US DOT Awards $8.5M for Terry First Connection

March 25, 2024

The US Department of Transportation (DOT) awarded the City of Pocatello $8,500,000 to improve connections between the city’s core neighborhoods by providing improved and safer bicycle and pedestrian access across the Union Pacific Railroad via the Benton St. overpass. The Terry First Connection project will create a complete corridor with updated infrastructure to improve community connectivity, including mobility, access, and economic development.

The Terry First Connection project was based off of the 2018 Terry First Report, completed by City staff in conjunction with Community Builders and Team Better Block. The project included a robust community engagement project that tested possible project area improvements along East Terry St. and South 1st Ave. corridor including a limitless lane (bicycle lane), parklets, landscaping, murals, bulb-outs, and parking. The report resulted in recommendations that were incorporated into concept designs completed by Utah State University. This report and these plans served as the base for the Reconnecting Communities and Neighborhoods (RCN) Grant application.

Through a redesign of the lane configuration at the city’s Benton St. overpass, the project area will maximize driving lanes, improve pedestrian spaces, and create a designated buffered bicycle lane to connect the city’s Bengal and Warehouse Districts with Historic Downtown Pocatello.

The DOT-funded Terry First Connection project includes:

  • Installation of a traffic signal at E. Benton St. and S. 2nd Ave.
  • Updated signal with new intersection configuration at W. Benton St. and S. Main St.
  • Updates to all street markings to create approximately one mile of designated, bidirectional bicycle lanes along E. Terry St. and S. 1st Ave.
  • Buffered, multimodal path on the Benton Street overpass
  • Expanded sidewalk on S. 1st Ave from Benton St. to E. Terry St.
  • Updated street lighting at the intersections of Terry St. and S. 5th Ave and S. 4th Ave.
  • Installation of vegetated planters along both sides of S. 1st Ave and Terry St., with green infrastructure for stormwater drainage.

Support for the project came from numerous partners including Idaho State University and the Pocatello Elks Lodge #674. When awarding the money, DOT prioritized projects that mitigated the effects of infrastructure that interrupted connections between neighborhoods such as the railroad bisecting the east-west connection in Pocatello. DOT awarded $3.3B in projects to 132 communities. To learn more about the RCN grant click HERE.