Idaho Mountain Express: Mountain Rides Moves Ahead With Bellevue Hub

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The Wood River Valley town of Bellevue took a significant step toward being more connected with other parts of the Sun Valley area.

That's because Mountain Rides, a bus line serving the residents of Ketchum, Sun Valley, Bellevue and Hailey, received authorization from a Federal Transportation Authority board July 11 to negotiate a contract with Pocatello architectural firm Jenson Hayes Shropshire Architects to construct a new South Valley Transit Center, the Idaho Mountain Express reports.

The new facility is slated to be built on a half-acre property near Clover Lane and Gannett Road in south Bellevue. The two lots were purchased earlier this year by the Mountain Rides Transportation Authority from Blaine County for $125,000. MRTA has set aside $950,000 for the project, which includes an $800,000 grant from the Federal Transportation Authority. Other funds will come from MRTA's capital fund as local matching funds.

MRTA said it expects to spend 85-90 percent of the funds on construction and the remainder on design, engineering and management. Construction is expected to begin in April 2015—roughly when downtown Boise will be in the throes of the constructing the Clearwater Building and Multimodal Transit Center as part of the City Center Plaza, on which stakeholders broke ground July 1.