Carson City transportation officials Wednesday will reexamine turning Roop and Stewart streets into one-way streets.
In 1996 city officials looked at creating couplets that would transform Roop Street into a one-way street heading north and Stewart Street into a one-way southbound street. At the time, the idea was derided as a Band-Aid to the only solution to Carson's chronic traffic problems: the freeway.
The idea resurfaced as a potential way to help traffic through the capital in light of slow progress on the freeway, which is scheduled to be finished from Lakeview Hill to Spooner Summit Junction by 2010.
Transportation commissioners Wednesday will set their funding priorities for the coming year. Street Operations Manager John Flansberg said if commissioners want to look further into the couplet project, it could delay setting priorities.
Flansberg said a review of plans for transportation projects through 2015 shows that with the freeway, Carson's traffic levels would be in an acceptable range. However, Flansberg said it may be worth it to see if there is a "benefit for internal circulation to the couplet versus just widening Roop Street," another potential high-priority project. Flansberg said there may be other possibilities to better utilize both streets.
However, transportation Chairman Jon Plank said he doesn't favor the couplet idea and instead would prefer to focus the commission's limited funds on projects such as the Roop widening and Curry Street expansion.
"They would help relieve congestion and increase capacity for traffic going north and south and maybe relieve some of the congestion on Carson Street," Plank said.
Flansberg is proposing the city refinance bonds used to pay for the $6 million Graves Lane extension to allow for the estimated $3.6 million expansion of Roop to four lanes as well as a $1.6 million expansion of Curry. A $320,000 extension of Stewart Street from Carson Street to Curry is planned with that project. All of these projects could be completed next year with the refinancing of the bonds.
City leaders have kicked around the idea of repaying early the city's $19 million debt to the Nevada Department of Transportation, but Flansberg said that idea appears to have cooled because traffic projects that will benefit the city can be achieved through some creative financing.
The transportation commission has had around $720,000 a year to spend on transportation projects as more than half the $3 million collected through gas taxes -- about $1.7 million -- is sent directly to NDOT as a contribution to help construct the freeway.
Flansberg said he also will ask for $250,000 to reconstruct South Edmonds Drive between Valley View Drive and Snyder Avenue. The road needs to be replaced he said, and there is money in the budget that could be shifted to fix it later this year.
If you go:
What: Carson City Regional Transportation Commission meeting
When: 5:30 p.m., Wednesday
Where: the Community Center's Sierra Room, 851 E. William St.