Second Driver’s License Office Opening in Ada County
Do you remember how dramatic the wait for a Drivers License was about a year ago? I recall getting in line at the Canyon County DMV (thinking the line would be a little less busy) and HOUR before they even opened...only to freeze about 50-people deep in line that morning. Issues with backlogging was at hand and a rush to get new ID's that fall under the "Star Card" qualifications were pressing.
Well, after all of the talk and discussion of adding a second licensing location--it's happening. Appointments and a strong message of planning ahead has helped alleviate some of the craziness, but there's still some good news. Construction is beginning on the second location for Ada County which will be off of Progress Avenue in Meridian--near the Winco and the Idaho State Police Department.
The statement released by the Ada County Sheriff's Office said the following:
There has been a lot of talk about long wait times at our Driver’s License office in Boise over the past two years — and an oft heard wish for a second location somewhere in western Ada County to help alleviate the crowds at our Benjamin Lane office and reduce travel for many of our citizens.
The wish is granted. Construction is about to begin on a second Driver’s License office building in the 700 block of S. Progress Avenue in Meridian. It’s a few blocks north of the Meridian Road exit at Interstate 84 (just north of the WinCo). Construction is scheduled to be done by the end of the summer.The Meridian office will be able to handle growth up to16 customer service windows, a total of 16 testing stations, and will have plenty of parking.We've been pursuing this project for years and are excited to finally begin. We have high hopes the new Meridian location will provide efficient service to residents of western Ada County. We estimate, if all goes well, it should be open by fall 2021.Having a second location will also add to the innovations our staff have already adopted at our Benjamin Lane office in Boise to reduce crowd size and fight the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.With our appointment-only system up and running, our wait times at our Benjamin office are now under six minutes, and our total visit time averages about 15 minutes.You just can’t show up at the office anymore. You must make an appointment online at https://dmvscheduling.adacounty.id.gov/naoa/index.jsp (select “Drivers License” on the drop down menu, and then pick a service from the second drop-down menu. The most common is “Renewals”).Since there is no walk-up service anymore, we have a lot more appointments available on a daily basis. Most people are able to schedule an appointment within days.You must be on time for your appointment. If you are more than 10 minutes late, the appointment is cancelled and you will have to schedule a new one for a later date.This system has been working well for months, and we have high hopes it will continue. With the Idaho Transportation Department offering online renewals at https://www.accessidaho.org/itd/driver/profile/index, there are more options than ever to renew your driver’s license and be safe at the same time.Our advice is if you just need to renew your four-year class D driver’s license without getting a REAL ID/Star Card, do it online and avoid a trip. If you are a new driver, new resident to Idaho, renewing an eight-year license, or need commercial license services, you will need to make an appointment and go to the Benjamin Lane office.You must also make an appointment if you want to get the REAL ID/Star Card, as that service is not available online. Check out https://itd.idaho.gov/starcard/faq.html for more info on the Star Card.
None of this would be possible without the support of the Ada County Board of County Commissioners, who budgeted $500,000 in 2019 for us to find and lease a second Driver's License office.