Construction projects will clog Stateline

STATELINE - Two proposed projects along the casino corridor this spring may hold up traffic near the state line.

The installation of a stormwater treatment system in Stateline and the realignment of Park Avenue in South Lake Tahoe are both scheduled to begin in May and continue through June.

The work could cause 30-minute delays through the downtown area.

Representatives from interested parties including the Tahoe-Douglas Chamber of Commerce, the South Lake Tahoe Chamber of Commerce, the city of South Lake Tahoe, Douglas County, California's Department of Transportation and casino administrators have been working to come up with a plan to smooth the process.

Gary Midkiff, of the environmental consulting firm Midkiff and Associates, said negotiations are still under way.

"Right now, what's going to happen is that we'll have a traffic management plan in place that may or may not satisfy everybody," Midkiff said. "But if there are traffic delays of more than 30 minutes, they'll have to shut things down and open up the lanes so traffic can get through."

He said the first construction phase of the stormwater project begins in May with the installation of droplets along the curb line of U.S. Highway 50 through the casino core.

The work would squeeze the highway down to two lanes Sunday through Thursday but would remain fully open on weekends.

An alternate route around the casino core on Park Avenue will also be closed May 1 to June 30, according to Judith Von Klug, South Lake Tahoe's redevelopment manager.

"They're going to realign the two sharp angles on Park Avenue into a lazy S curve. Also the utilities will be moved and a new curb and gutter will be installed," she said. "They'll only need to go into the highway for about one week and they'll try and do that as early on in the process as possible."

Von Klug said one of Highway 50's four lanes would be closed during that one-week period and a detour through the Crescent V Shopping Center will divert traffic around the Park Avenue closure for the entire two months.

Initial detour plans to turn Highway 50 into a one-way, westbound street with Lake Parkway acting as an eastbound route were scrapped but remain a possibility, said Midkiff.

"It was looked at and it still could be looked at again," he said.

Road construction will cease in July and August, during the peak visitor months and the annual resurfacing project is scheduled for September.


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