Current News

6/12/24

Please expect delays from Monday, June 17th - Thursday, June 20th at the intersection of Nettleingham Rd and US 95 as Ruen-Yeager & Associates, Inc. will be conducting a geotechnical investigation.

Thank you.

6/12/24

District 2 (Priest River/Priest Lake)

This week we will be on the east river, north of Mud Gulch Rd: Icehouse Rd, Clinton Ave, Sherwood Beach Rd, Tanglefoot Rd.

After that we will be working our way up the west side of the lake: West Lakeshore Rd, Shady Pines Loop, Williams Dr.

Then we will get up to the roads in Reeder Bay next week

There will be green or orange signage indicating the date that the roads will have the MAG applied. Please drive accordingly.

6/7/24

District 3 (Sandpoint/Clark Fork)

Monday, June 10th:

West half of Gold Creek Rd and Meadowood Rd. 

6/5/24

RAPID LIGHTNING ROAD

Starting Thursday, 6/6/2024 the 7000 Block of Rapid Lightning Rd will be closed for an emergency culvert replacement. There will be one lane of traffic open but expect delays. 

6/5/24

District 2 (Priest River/Priest Lake)

Wednesday, June 5th:

Carr Creek Rd, Johnny Long Rd, Mountain Creek Rd, High Circle Rd and Helen Thompson Rd.

Thursday, June 6th (possibly to be continued on Monday, June 10th):

North Riley Creek Rd ,Campbell Loop, Moore Loop, Manley Creek Rd, Shelby Rd and Santa Maria Rd. today is

5/29/24

District 3 (Sandpoint/Clark Fork)

Thursday, May 30th the following roads will be treated:

Baldy Mtn Rd, Rapid Lightning Rd, Upper Gold Creek Rd (starting at Rapid Lightning side..We will not finish tomorrow)

There will be green or orange signage indicating the date that the roads will have the MAG applied. Please drive accordingly.

5/28/24

SUNNYSIDE ROAD

Starting Wednesday, 5/29/2024 the Road & Bridge Department will be closing down Sunnyside Rd at the 100 block for an unexpected washout. There will be a detour sign on Sunnyside Rd before Sunnyside Cutoff and two more at the railroad underpass at the Highway 95 entrance. 

5.24.24

On Wednesday, May 29th please expect delays in about the 120 block of E Spring Creek Rd, approximately 1/4 mile from the highway due do that portion of road being paved.

Thank you.

5.24.24

District 3 (Sandpoint/Clark Fork)

Tuesday 5-28-24

Shepherds Ln, Evergreen Rd, Hopkins Rd, Winterton Rd, Grouse Creek Rd (from Samuels Rd to the Bridge Project, Mcnall Rd)

There will be green or orange signage indicating the date that the roads will have the MAG applied. Please drive accordingly.

5.21.24

The Bonner County Road & Bridge Department will be closed on Monday, May 27th in observance of Memorial Day. 

We will be back open for our regular business hours on Tuesday, May 28th 6:30am - 5:00pm.

Thank you! 

5.17.24

District 3 (Sandpoint/Clark Fork)

Monday, May 20th:

Trestle Creek Rd, Eastside of Sunnyside Rd, Sunnyside Cutoff & Old Highway 

District 2 (Priest River/Priest Lake)

Monday, May 20th - Thursday, May 23rd:

Eastriver Rd from Mud Gulch Rd down to the pavement, Peninsula Loop, Barrett Rd. & Eastriver Loop road.

There will be green or orange signage indicating the date that the roads will have the MAG applied. Please drive accordingly.

5.14.24

District 3 (Sandpoint/Clark Fork)

Wednesday, May 15th:

West elmira

Elmira

There will be green or orange signage indicating the date that the roads will have the MAG applied. Please drive accordingly.

5.14.24

Railroad Crossing Closings from Union Pacific UPDATE:

Samuels Rd RR Crossing will be closed May 15th, 4am-10pm  

Detour Route Signage will be put up for motorists during the closure.

UPDATE: Kootenai Rd RR Crossing will no longer be closed.  Union Pacific gave incorrect information and Kootenai Cutoff Rd is the road they intend to close on Thursday, May 16th from 7am - 7pm.

For information regarding that closure please contact the City of Ponderay.

5.13.24

District 1 (South of the Long Bridge)

Tuesday, May 14, 2024:

Clagstone Rd from Spirit Lake Cutoff to Highway 41, Clagstone Cutoff, Als Welding, and finishing Blanchard Cutoff.

Wednesday, May 15, 2024:

Clagstone Rd from Kelso/Clagstone Cutoff to Spirit Lake Cutoff, Kelso Lake Rd, Bandy Rd, Edgemere Cutoff, Vay Rd, Kendall Rd.

There will be green or orange signage indicating the date that the roads will have the MAG applied. Please drive accordingly.

District 3 (Sandpoint/Clark Fork)

Tuesday, May 14, 2024:

Center Valley, South Center Valley, North Center Valley.

Possibly: Forest Siding Rd, Racetrack Rd.

5.9.24

District 2 (Priest River/Priest Lake) roads will be treated with Mag Chloride starting May 13, 2024:

Albeni Cove Rd, Rena Rd, Blackthorn Rd, Endicott Loop, Elder Rd, Groves Addition, Parley Ln, Jachetta Rd, Jachetta Cutoff, Springdale Gardens, South 1st Street, South 2nd Street.

After those are completed the crews will be starting from HWY 41 and will be working their way East in D2.

There will be green or orange signage indicating the date that the roads will have the MAG applied.  Please drive accordingly.

5.9.24

District 1 (South of the Long Bridge) roads will be treated with Mag Chloride starting May 13, 2024:

Roberts Ln, Saunders Rd, South Santiago Rd, Rusho Ln, Railroad Ave, Poirier Rd, Mountain View Rd, Deer Trail Rd, Blanchard Cutoff, Walker Rd, and Geaudreau Ln.

Tuesday May 14, 2024:
Clagstone Rd from Spirit Lake Cutoff to Highway 41, Clagstone Cutoff, Al’s Welding, finish Blanchard Cutoff.

There will be green or orange signage indicating the date that the roads will have the MAG applied.  Please drive accordingly.

5.8.24

District 3 (Sandpoint/Clarkfork) will be starting to apply Magnesium Chloride for dust abatement to the County Roads starting Monday the 13th. We will be starting around town and then will be migrating out into the valley.

There will be green or orange signage indicating the date that the roads will have the MAG applied.  Please drive accordingly.

4.30.24

Railroad Crossing Closings from BNSF (UPDATE 4/30/24):

  • Great Northern Rd. and Gooby Rd crossing will be closed from Monday (4/29) 7:30 am and reopen 5 pm on Wednesday (5/1)
  • Sagle Rd will be closed Thursday (5/6) from 8 am to 5pm same day.

4.30.24

Starting Wednesday, May 1st, 2024, Grouse Creek Rd will be closed between Grouse Creek Cutoff and Samuels Rd to thru traffic for a bridge replacement. The closure will be several months. There will be signage for the appropriate detour.  

4.26.24

Railroad Crossing Closings from Union Pacific:

"Crossing at Clagstone Rd will be closed Tuesday, April 30 7AM - 5PM

Crossing at Kelso Lake Rd will be closed Wednesday, May 1 7AM - 5PM

Detour Route Signage will be put up for motorists during the closure."  

Thank you.

4.25.24

On Monday, April 29th, 2024 we will be starting culvert replacements on Sunnyside Rd starting from the 5000 Block - 6000 Block.  Expect delays. Thank you.

4.17.24

Any political sign at county intersections in the county right-of-way blocking sight visibility WILL be removed by the Road & Bridge Department. Signs must be placed on or as near to the private property line as possible. These signs in the intersections are dangerous for the traveling public and will not be allowed. 

Jason Topp

Director

Bonner County Road & Bridge

2.13.24

The Bonner County Road and Bridge Administrative office will be closed on Monday, February 19th in observance of Presidents Day. 

We will be back open for our regular business hours on Tuesday, February 20th 6:30am - 5:00pm.

Thank you! 

1.29.24

 BONNER COUNTY 

 Road & Bridge Department                     

1500 Highway 2, Suite 101  ·  Sandpoint, ID  83864  ·  Phone: 208-255.5681; ext. 1  Fax: 208-263.9084 email: Jason.topp@bonnercountyid.gov     

Hello Bonner County Residents, 

I wanted to give everyone an update on what is coming up. ALL Bonner County roads will be posted with weight limits with green ribbon on them by the end of the day tomorrow, 01-30-2024. The green ribbon means that the roads are currently still open to haul, but you should be moving your equipment to wherever you need it as soon as possible! As soon as we post with green ribbon, we can go RED at any moment. We try to give folks 24 hours’ notice before we turn to red status (that is 24 hours from the time the road was posted with the green ribbon). Red ribbon or NO ribbon means the weight limits are in effect and you must abide by the posted weight limit sign. There will be some roads posted NO hauling, these roads will have absolutely no hauling allowed.

With this warm front that is moving through our area, our roads are taking a beating. They are plagued with potholes. The roads are extremely saturated, making it almost impossible to grade. If we cut these roads, they will become almost impassable with a muddy, mucky mess. The Road and Bridge Crews are doing all that they can. These conditions are expected for this time of year for all the gravel roads. Some years are worse than others, but we always get through it. 

Once we start to dry out, the graders will become much more effective. It’s looking like it is going to be a long spring, so please, hang in there and be patient.

Jason Topp

Director

Bonner County Road & Bridge

1/30/24

Starting Tuesday, January 30th, 2024 expect delays on E Spring Creek Rd due to the Road & Bridge Department conducting emergency repairs.

1.18.24

 BONNER COUNTY 

 Road & Bridge Department                     

1500 Highway 2, Suite 101  ·  Sandpoint, ID  83864  ·  Phone: 208-255.5681; ext. 1  Fax: 208-263.9084 email: Jason.topp@bonnercountyid.gov      

Hello Bonner County Residents,

I am sure everyone is looking forward to the warmer weather headed our way next week. These low temperatures have not been fun for most folks with frozen water lines, power outages, etc…The warmer weather will bring even more challenges due to our roads being frozen solid. With the frozen roads, when the rain begins to fall, the road will start to build ice. The crews will sand the roads, and another layer of ice will build on top of that, hiding the fact that we have sanded. When this occurs, please be patient and try to limit driving if possible until we can address the conditions. If you need to be out and about, take your time and plan ahead as these roads will be extremely slick. 

Crews are out in full force and will be very busy trying to keep up. It will be a slow process as they are also trying to navigate these slick roads and not end up in a ditch. Your driveways will most likely be in the same disarray. Emergency services will have a very difficult time being able to respond on private roads and driveways. If sanding is possible, please do so. If not, be aware if you cannot drive on your road or driveway, they most likely cannot either. Do your best with the resources you have available to you. 

Hopefully these conditions will be short lived, and we will all get through it safely. I hope this helps folks understand what the Road and Bridge crews are facing in this next wave of weather Bonner County will be up against. 

Jason Topp

Director

Bonner County Road & Bridge

1.9.24

The Bonner County Road and Bridge Administrative office will be closed on Monday, January 15th in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. 

We will be back open for our regular business hours on Tuesday, January 16th 6:30am - 5:00pm.

Thank you! 

12.28.23

The Bonner County Road and Bridge Administrative Office will be closed on Monday, January 1st, 2024. 

We will be back open for our normal business hours on Tuesday, January 2nd from 6:30am - 5:00pm

Have a Safe and Happy New Year!

12.14.23



We will be closed on Monday, December 25th and Tuesday, December 26th. We will be back open on Wednesday, December 27th from 6:30am - 5:00pm.
 
  Thank you and have a Merry Christmas!

11/28/23

Expect delays on Upper Gold Creek Rd from Gold Creek Rd to Western Pleasure Guest Ranch due to the Road & Bridge Department removing hazardous trees.

Thank you.

11/14/23

The Road and Bridge Administrative Office will be closed November 23rd and 24th.  We will be back open 

for our normal business hours on Monday, November 27th 6:30am to 5:00pm.  Thank you!

11/07/23

We will be closed Friday, November 10th 2023 in observance of Veteran's Day.

We will back open for our normal hours of operation on Monday, November 13th 2023 6:30a.m. - 5:00p.m.

Thank you to all who served.

10/25/23

E DUFORT RD

Expect delays due to shoulder work on E Dufort Rd on Thursday, 10/26/23 starting at 7:00 am.

Thank you.

10/24/23

BNSF will be closing the Barnhart Rd railroad crossing on Wednesday, November 1st from 9:30 am to 4:00 pm for paving.  They will be putting up a message board on Friday, October 27th.

10/17/23

UPLAND DRIVE EMERGENCY CULVERT REPLACEMENT

Starting Wednesday, 10/18/2023 from 7:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m., between 1184 and 1233 Upland Drive, the road will be closed to through traffic for an emergency culvert replacement.  

10/16/23

E DUFORT RD

Expect delays due to paving on E Dufort Rd, if possible, please use alternate route. 

Thank you.

10/4/23

 

We will be closed Monday, October 9th 2023 in observance of the holiday weekend.

We will back open for our normal hours of operation on Tuesday, October 10th 2023 6:30a.m. - 5:00p.m.

Thank you!

9/6/23

PAVING DUFORT RD AT THE 5700 BLOCK

Expect delays on Monday, September 11th due to the crews applying pavement where the culvert was replaced at the 5700 block of Dufort Rd.

Thank you.

8/31/23

We will be closed Monday, September 4th 2023 in observance of Labor Day.

We will back open for our normal hours of operation on Tuesday, September 5th 2023 6:30a.m. - 5:00p.m.

Thank you and have a safe and happy Labor day! 

8/29/23

COMEBACK BAY LANE CULVERT REPLACEMENT

Starting Thursday, 8/31/2023, there will be a road closure on Comeback Bay Ln at the Bottle Bay Rd intersection for a culvert replacement.  

8/11/23

Wooded Acres Drive

Expect delays due to chip sealing on Wooded Acres Dr. on Monday, August 14th.

Thank you.

8/9/23 - 8/10/23

CAMP BAY RD 

Expect delays due to chip sealing on Camp Bay Road starting this afternoon and possibly into tomorrow (Thursday, August 10th).

Thank you.

8/9/23

CLAGSTONE ROAD STARTING AT THE KOOTENAI COUNTY END

Expect delays due to chip sealing on Clagstone Road starting at the Kootenai County End.

Thank you.

8/8/23

BODIE CANYON ROAD AND TWEEDIE ROAD

Expect delays due to chip sealing on Bodie Canyon Road and Tweedie Road at Highway 41.

Thank you.

8/1/23

VAY RD - MERRITT BRIDGE

Expect delays from Vay Road through Merritt Bridge due to chip sealing.

Thank you.

7/26/23

DUFORT ROAD AT 5700 BLOCK ON SATURDAY 7/29/23

Maintenance will be done on the guard rail of Dufort Road in the 5700 block area where the culvert had previously failed. The road will continue to be open but please expect delays.

Thank you.

7/22/23

Dufort Road is now open to the public. Please use caution in the 5700 block area. Thank you for your patience.

7/19/23

COLBURN CULVER ROAD AT HIGHWAY 95

Chip Sealing will begin on Colburn Culver Road at Highway 95. Expect extended delays. 

7/18/23

E DUFORT ROAD CULVERT REPLACEMENT

Starting Wednesday, 7/19/2023, there will be a road closure from 3270 - 3389 E Dufort Road for a culvert replacement.  

7/17/23

E DUFORT ROAD CULVERT REPLACEMENT

Starting Tuesday, 7/18/2023, there will be a road closure from 1657 - 2166 E Dufort Road for a culvert replacement.  

7/14/23

E DUFORT ROAD CULVERT REPLACEMENT

Starting Monday, 7/17/2023, there will be a partial road closure at 1657 E Dufort Road just to the east of Algoma Spur Road for a culvert replacement.  

7/12/23

GOLD CREEK ROAD AND COLBURN CULVER ROAD AT HIGHWAY 200

Chip Sealing will begin for Gold Creek Road and Colburn Culver Road at Highway 200. Expect delays. 

7/11/23

1340 E DUFORT ROAD - 2550 S SAGLE ROAD CULVERT REPLACEMENT

Starting tomorrow, Wednesday, 7/12/2023, there will be partial road closures from the 1340 block of E Dufort Road to the 2550 block of S Sagle Road for the replacement of three culverts.  

7/6/23

DUFORT ROAD - CULVERT FAILURE

The coffer dam is completed and crews are now de-watering the site. The excavation has started for the new culvert. This has been a long process with quite a few obstacles that we have had to work through. The hope is to have the new culvert in place next Wednesday, 7/12/23, and begin to back fill. Once the back filling is completed, we will remove the coffer dam. This will take an estimation of three days. After that, we will start building the road back over the pipe. We are hoping to have the road back open to the public in two weeks. Thank you for your patience as this has been hectic on all sides.

Thank you, Jason Topp - Director 

Office Closed 7/3/23 - 7/4/23

Bonner County Road & Bridge Department will be closed on Monday, July 3rd and Tuesday, July 4th, 2023. We will reopen on Wednesday July 5th, 2023 at normal business hours of 6:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

6/26/2023

E DUFORT ROAD - CULVERT REPLACEMENT 

Starting tomorrow, June 27th, 2023 the crew will be replacing culverts on E Dufort Road, you may experience delays throughout the week. 

6/15/23

DUFORT ROAD - CULVERT FAILURE

The new culvert is scheduled to be here by June 23rd. The process to drive the sheeting into the ground in order to remove the water from the repair area is expected to be started on June 20th. We have been stockpiling the materials on site that are needed for the repair in order to expedite the process once we can begin. We hope to have the road re-opened by July 7th but will do everything in our power to have it opened earlier if possible. Again, we thank you for your patience.

6/12/23

DUFORT ROAD - CULVERT FAILURE

We have ordered a new culvert and it will be here by the 23rd of this month. It is coming from Topeka, Kansas as they have the fastest turnaround time. We are working with multiple contractors to get the sheet piles in so that we can dewater and seal the new culvert. We are working as fast as we can to get this taken care of and to get the road open to the public. A bridge was an option we were considering but that would take too long as we need this done as soon as possible. Please be patient. I know this is inconvenient for everyone including us.

Thank you Jason Topp, Director

6/6/23

DUFORT ROAD - CULVERT FAILURE

UPDATE:

The culvert completely failed today and an opening had to be excavated to prevent flooding. We are still exploring our options for repair and investigating the most timely and cost effective option between a bridge or another culvert. Either option will take longer than a month to complete. As soon as we have a plan and a timeline we will provide an update.

On Sunday, June 4th it was discovered that the culvert south of Lakeshore Drive in the 5700 block of Dufort Road was failing. There was no warning for this failure and we have reports of residents in the area as late as Saturday evening that say everything looked fine. We are meeting with all resources available to formulate a plan for the repairs. The rising lake is complicating this plan immensely. As soon as we have figured out the best way to proceed we will post an update with a better timeline for the road to re-open.

We thank you for your patience. 

3/7/23

Congratulations to these Bonner County Road & Bridge Operators for being recognized for completing the appropriate classes to obtain the status of Road Scholar and/or Road Master! Their hard work and dedication are essential to the safety and success of Bonner County and we are all so grateful to have them as part of our Road and Bridge team!

Jonas Topp (Road Scholar & Road Master), Caiden Oliver (Road Scholar & Road Master), Bill Libbers (Road Scholar & Road Master), Sean Smiley (Road Scholar), Aaron Seck (Road Scholar & Road Master), Larry Alley (Road Scholar), Chris Williams (Road Scholar & Road Master) and Phillip Powell (Road Scholar & Road Master)

12/20/22

12/20/22

11/29/22

Please see below for a letter from our Director, Jason Topp regarding Winter Maintenance

11/21/22

10/12/22

BNSF will be closing the Algoma Spur railroad crossing on Monday, October 17th from 7 am to 6 pm for paving.  Detour signs will be posted 3 days in advance.

9/28/22

A portion of Sunnyside Road is being paved this week. Please expect delays 7am-7pm through Friday, 9/30/22.

8/24/22

The 4200 block of Sunnyside Rd, just west of Osprey Roost, will be closed on Monday, Aug 29th from 7 am to 4 pm for road work. Please use alternate routes.

8/22/22

Sunnyside Road will be closed at the 4100 block, just west of Osprey Roost, on Wednesday, August 24th from 7am to 4pm for culvert replacement. Please use alternative routes.

8/18/22

BNSF will be closing the Algoma Spur railroad tracks for repairs on Monday, August 29th from 7 am to 6 pm.

8/11/22

Two Temporary Road Closures

The Kelso Clagstone Cutoff road in Spirit Lake will be closed on Saturday, August 13th from 6:30am to 5pm for road work. Detour routes will be posted.

Sunnyside Road will be closed at the 4200 block, just east of Osprey Roost, on Wednesday August 17th from 7am to Noon for tree removal. Please use alternative routes.

8/1/22

The Sandpoint Urban Area Transportation Plan is being developed by a multi-jurisdictional Planning Group, (MJPG) including the following local stakeholders: ldaho Transportation Department (ITD}, City of Dover, City of Ponderay, City of Kootenai, City of Sandpoint, the lndependent Highway District, and Bonner County.
Together, the MJPG are developing a unified transpor­tation master plan through interactive stakeholder workshops and public engagement strategies. The plan will provide a transportation vision focused on the cities and lands adjacent to Sandpoint to ensure adequate resources and activity is directed to the transportation network, activity centers, and public domain within the urban area boundary (UAB).

We would greatly appreciate your input! You can scan the QR codes below or visit the links directly.

StoryMap

Survey Link 

7/7/22

BNSF will be closing the railroad track for repairs on Boyer Ave at Baldy Mountain Rd starting Monday, July 11th at 6 am and reopening on Wednesday, July 13th at 6 pm. Detour signs will be set up this week.

Please note that this is a courtesy notification. This is not a Bonner County maintained road.

6/28/22

Sunnyside Road will be closed at approximately the 4200 block (just west of Osprey Roost) on Thursday, July 7th from 7 am to 3 pm to remove large trees. Please plan accordingly.

5/18/22

Razz Construction, Inc. will be beginning work for ITD at the following Railroad Crossing locations starting May 31st, 2022.

The crossings are in multiple places throughout Bonner County. Work will take place from the hours of 7:00am-5:00pm. There will be implemented road closures with a detour at crossing’s two through seven. The rest of the crossings will have single lane closures and will utilize flaggers.

Crossing 1- Homestead Rd

Crossing 2- Granite Loop Rd

Crossing 3- N Granite Loop Rd

Crossing 4- Kelso Clagstone Cuttoff

Crossing 5- Barnhardt RD

Crossing 6- Kelso Lake RD

Crossing 7- Edgemere Cutoff

Crossing 8- Jewel Lake RD

Crossing 9- Thama DR

Crossing 10- Lakeshore Dr

Crossing 11- Berry LN

Crossing 12- Gypsy Bay RD

Crossing 13- McGhee Rd

Crossing 14- Firestone Ln

Crossing 15- N Boyer Rd

Crossing 16- W Selle RD

Crossing 18- Race Track Rd

Crossing 19- N Elmira Rd

Crossing 20- Elmira RD 7.7 North off HWY 2

Work will begin at crossing number two and three on May 31st, 2022. Project duration is expected until the last week of July 2022. Please plan for any unforeseen traffic delays in the area.

5/18/22

5/16/22

4/21/22

Clagstone Road between the 5600 block and the 6200 block will be closed on Tuesday, April 26th from 6 am to 4 pm for the final phase of the road realignment. Detour signs will be posted. Please plan accordingly.

4/4/22

The 16000 block of Dufort Rd in Priest River will be closed on Wednesday, April 6th from 6am to 4pm to replace a failing culvert. Please plan accordingly.

3/29/22

Notice from the City of Sandpoint ~

Great Northern Road is scheduled to be closed 3-31-22 at 7am overnight to reopen 4-1-22 around 6pm for railway repairs. Below is the closure map/detour route. Signage will be placed at Woodland and Baldy Mtn. Rd to give motorists advanced notice before reaching the closure.

*Please direct all questions to the City of Sandpoint.

3/28/2022

Spring Update - Letter from the Road & Bridge Director Jason Topp

Hello Bonner County Residents, I thought I would give you folks an update from the Road and Bridge Department. Bonner County Road and Bridge crews were very busy this winter trying their best to keep 678 + miles of roads clear and safe. Road and Bridge crews struggled to keep up as the traffic has increased dramatically on our roads. Some of our gravel roads have seen an increase in traffic from a few years ago at 300 cars a day to now close to 800 cars a day with some of our asphalt roads reaching close to 2800 cars a day. We have had some interesting weather patterns from several hard freeze events then to rain creating some very slick roads. In our higher elevations, some roads are still covered in ice. Just to give you an idea for what it cost to perform this maintenance Road and Bridge winter maintenance cost for this winter was a little over 2.3 million. This is only the fuel, equipment cost, labor and sand.

Weight restrictions have been posted on all County Roads at this time.

The spring rains, snow melt along with the increase in traffic have created quite a mess with our gravel roads. Road and Bridge maintains around 380 miles of gravel roads throughout the County. Our equipment operators are doing what they can to address the potholes that have plagued our gravel roads. This takes time, I know everyone would like their county road graded and we will get to them. This time of year, as everything is starting to thaw out, the roads will become saturated with water. This makes it very difficult to grade as it just turns to a soupy mess and will just blow right back out as it is too wet to compact with the mud covering your vehicle as well. As we cut the potholes, we expose the frozen layer directly under the surface and this starts a chain event for more mud and water. This usually lasts a good month or so until things start to dry out. When we prep our roads for the winter, we put around a 3% to 4% crown in our gravel roads to help the public stay on the roads better when snow or ice covered. If the crown is too steep cars will slide off the road or tend to drive in the middle of the road to straddle the crown in fear that they will go in the ditch. This is a double edge sword as when spring comes around, we do not have enough crown for the water to drain properly therefore saturating the soils which causes the slew of potholes that plague our roads. As we start to dry out, we will reshape the roads with a steeper crown of 5% to 6% so the roads stay relatively smooth for the summer and fall months. This just happens to be the cycle of life here in Bonner County. Hard surface roads are a bit easier to maintain since water just sheets off into the ditch. I have been out driving some of these roads and for the most part the roads are starting to dry out and starting to take shape. Operators have begun to put a higher percentage of a crown on these roads for the summer months. We have now entered the flooding months as well. Streams are very high, and water is flowing at a high rate of speed causing more issues like overloading culverts, creating washouts and land or rockslides. Crews are addressing these areas.

There are more miles of non-maintained public roads in Bonner County than County maintained roads. These non-maintained roads are and have always been problematic for the residents who live along them during this time of year. These roads are not maintained by the Road Department but are left to the individuals who live along them to maintain. There has been some confusion by residents that because it is a public road, they think the County should maintain it. These roads were created by developers or private landowners and then dedicated to the public so people would not have to buy an easement for each property and allow access. These roads were never built to a standard in which the County would consider for maintenance nor were they intended to become a County maintained road. Be sure of what you are purchasing as some of these areas may be flooded and impassable during certain times of the year and the Road Department is not funded to help with these roads.

Crews are out in full force sweeping the sand covered asphalt roads to prepare them for the summer. Be sure to keep a safe distance to avoid any accidents as dust will most definitely be a concern for visibility. Crews will have water trucks to try to help with this. As many of you have noticed, the inflation of fuel, oil, parts, equipment and pretty much anything that can be purchased has gone up in price here in recent months. Asphalt prices have increased 20% and continue to rise. Culverts prices went up by 63%, and liquid asphalt is expected to be around 33% higher. This could put a strain on our budget and make short work of our planned asphalt and construction projects. Maybe even reduce our chip seal projects that we do to preserve our asphalt roads. Road and Bridge is always trying to find better ways to best serve the public's needs and expectations within our budget and will continue to do so. I have worked for the Road and Bridge Department for almost 27 years, and I am very proud of what our crews have accomplished during this time. We have improved roads from no access in the springtime to year around access and some of these roads are now hard surfaced. We will continue to keep improving the roads and bridges of Bonner County. Road and Bridge has many road projects moving forward for this year. We will be applying 2.6 miles of asphalt on Clagstone Road as well as a realignment of a very dangerous corner within this section of the road. We will be applying asphalt to 2.2 miles of Camp Bay Road as well. We have around 67 miles of chip seal slatted for the preservation of our asphalt roads. We will be applying Magnesium Chloride to over 270 miles of gravel roads this year to preserve the surface life of our gravel roads system. 

With the new roll out of surplus funds from the state, 200 million was allocated to bridges. This money is to be used on bridges based on the ITD inspection report data which are only done on bridges greater than 20 feet in length. Bridges with weight restrictions are the main focus of this money throughout the state. These funds are to be applied for including a written letter showing the impacts and benefit to the public in the area for the reconstruction of or replacement of the bridge. These funds have no match from the County for any of the work to be done. Bonner County has several bridges that fall into this category with at least three that should rank in the top 100 to be considered. Bonner County Road and Bridge will be applying for these funds. There are also surplus funds that will be coming to the Road and Bridge Department sometime after July that is intended for road maintenance. The amount and date are still unknown; however, these funds will be put to good use while also helping with the budget constraints in fiscal year 2022 if received before October. I hope this update finds you all well. We here at Road and Bridge are looking forward to the warmer days ahead.

Jason Topp 

Director, Bonner County Road and Bridge

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