Years ago, a judicial ruling mandated property adjacent to North Fifth West could not be rezoned from single-family residential use (R1) unless someone widened the road.
On Jan. 2, Reggie Pinnock, an individual interested in purchasing two parcels near Fifth West, approached Rigby City Council about widening and straightening it. Pinnock said he would like to develop multifamily housing units, which would require the property to be rezoned to R2.
“In order to buy those and build anything on them, the road needs to be straightened,” Pinnock said.
Pinnock said he wanted to participate in a local improvement district (LID) to share costs of straightening the road with the three other adjacent property owners, which includes the City of Rigby. Pinnock said he would also widen the road.
An LID is a way for property owners to share costs of improvements that benefit them. In this case, Rigby Mayor Jason Richardson said only the four owners would be directly impacted. However, an LID, which is a governmental procedure, may not be the most cost effective option.
Mitch Bradley, Rigby public works director, said by his estimates, the LID would cost a total of between $324,000 and $360,000. He said the sidewalks would need to be moved, an engineer hired, the road demolished and more.
“Now if a private individual did that?” Council member Doug Burke asked.
“Cut that in half,” Bradley said. “But if the city does it, that’s what you’re looking at.”
If all four property owners participated at half the cost, each owner would pay approximately $40,000 to $45,000. Burke asked if the city could participate in its share of the cost without an LID. Robin Dunn, city attorney, said yes, Rigby could enter into a contract to pay a portion of the cost.
Richardson said the reason for Rigby’s financial contribution would be a 60 foot right-of-way the city owns across from South Fifth West. He said the city purchased the property in order to make a square intersection between the two roads.
“We actually purchased that for this, knowing that someday this was going to come forward,” Richardson said.
Richardson said it would also be Idaho Department of Transportation (ITD) officials’ preference to have the road straightened to create a square intersection with South Fifth West and North Fifth West.
Bryan Young, traffic/materials engineer with ITD District Six, said the preference would be to either square the intersection so the roads were directly across from one another or leave as-is. If the road were straightened, the intersections would be slightly offset.
“Just straightening it out where it is would actually cause more turning issues,” Young said.
Young said he was not certain whether squaring the road would be a feasible option, and said if it were not, ITD's preference would be to have it remain as is.