Was downtown Boise bike lane project worth $80,000?

BOISE, Idaho (KBOI) -- The Ada County Highway District, which controls the streets in Boise and set the guidelines for the downtown bike-lane pilot project, is erasing the white stripes and picking up those so-called candles, calling the experiment over after a month.

Some 500 candles were used at a cost of $18 each.

And the whole project could end up costing as much as $80,000 -- money from fuel and property taxes.

Was the taxpayers' money well used in this effort?

Yes, says ACHD spokeswoman Nicole Pineda. "I think it would have been a bigger waste to put this in on a permanent basis and have people that just didn't meld. We had situations we had to look at in terms of safety and other things."

But the Boise City Council wanted the bike lanes left in place as sort of a live laboratory.

"To move forward and make the project better instead of just making the investment then taking it out a month later," said Boise City Council President Maryann Jordan. "I think we could have used (the money) more efficiently."

Whether the money was well spent remains up for debate in a topic that isn't going away.

Jordan says Boise has the fourth highest number of bicycle commuters in the country per capita with increased ridership every year.