US Hwy 50 expects delays at roundabout
The Nevada Department of Transportation has announced that traffic on U.S. 50 in Silver Springs slightly shifted on Tuesday afternoon to use a new roundabout connecting the future USA Parkway extension to U.S. 50.
Previously, traffic traveled a detour around the under-construction roundabout on U.S. 50 near Opal Avenue in the Silver Springs area. Beginning the afternoon of Tuesday drivers can anticipate lane shifts as traffic begins using the new roundabout. Initially, one travel lane will be available in each direction through the roundabout. Once fully constructed, the roundabout will be two lanes in each direction and will connect U.S. 50 to the future USA Parkway. Motorists are advised to drive attentively through the new traffic configuration. For public safety and the safety of construction workers, travel is not allowed on the new USA Parkway extension as paving and other construction continues.
When the roundabout is complete, it will help enhance traffic safety. U.S. 50 speed limits through the roundabout will permanently be lowered as low as 25 mph. Because traffic enters and exits through right turns only, severe crashes are less frequent in roundabouts than in many four-way intersections. Traffic roundabouts can also decrease travel delays, congestion, fuel consumption and air pollution, while still allowing room for large trucks to travel through.
The USA Parkway was originally constructed as a privately built, six-mile-long road connecting Interstate 80 to the Tahoe Reno Industrial Center east of Sparks. The project will extend the Parkway by more than 12 miles to reach U.S. 50 at Silver Springs, creating an approximately 18-mile-long, four-lane state roadway between Interstate 80 and U.S. 50. Known as State Route 439, the new roadway will further link the greater Reno/Sparks area with the U.S. 50 corridor, enhancing regional mobility and creating an additional route for commuter, freight and other traffic. The road will also help support regional economic development and serve as another route in the event of emergency or weather-related road closures. The project is projected to reduce travel times by as much as 38% for those traveling between U.S. 50 and I-80. The $75.9 million project by design-build contractor Ames Construction is scheduled to complete in fall 2017, opening the new USA Parkway extension to traffic.