As a retired medical professional with almost half a century experience dealing with hospital/medical centers, St. Luke’s enhanced Boise downtown footprint proposal is understandable from their point of view, but it does not reflect my experiences with some non-Idaho medical centers. Western Treasure Valley population growth rates exceed Boise’s and that trend continues. Many (most?) St. Luke’s employees and increasing numbers of their patients are from west of Boise. These demographic realities alone should encourage St. Luke’s to more seriously consider (as it appears it already has) further Meridian campus expansion to meet this Valley’s and its mission needs with less further Boise disruption.
This opinion is not wholly dispassionate as I’m a 17-year East Ender daily relying on Jefferson Street’s downtown access. It does reflect experience with substantially increased traffic flows and congestion on Warm Springs Avenue, Jefferson and Reserve streets due to increased housing developments from areas those roads serve. Both Jefferson and Reserve streets increasingly are being used by commuters as shortcuts during peak commuting hours. The too-often potholed BLM’s Robbins and VA roads also serve similar but more limited use. St. Luke’s downtown proposal should be directed west.
Frederick W. Bauer, Boise