City, property owners along Old Clear Creek Road to discuss road
Appeal Staff Writer
A sign warns drivers entering Old Clear Creek Road from Highway 395 that it’s a private road and that it’s not maintained. Another sign reads “Local traffic only.”
The narrow, curvy, bumpy and crumbling road that repeatedly crosses the border between Carson City and Douglas County is the subject of a meeting between city officials and property owners along Old Clear Creek at 7 p.m. Monday at Carson City Fairgrounds.
The city is proposing that an assessment district be created to pay for road improvements along the private three-mile stretch that begins about a mile up from the highway and ends near the former Clear Creek Youth Camp.
“The residents want the city or NDOT to take responsibility for the road,” said Supervisor Shelly Aldean, also the chairwoman of the Regional Transportation Commission. “We’re trying to craft some sort of reasonable solution.
“The meeting is to ask the residents, ‘What do you want us to do?'” Aldean said.
The city won’t take over maintenance of the road unless its condition is improved. Proposed is $2.7 million in improvements, such as smoothing, restriping and upgrading its drainage system.
The amount of money required from each owner would depend on the amount of property they own, said Larry Werner, the city’s development services director.
Because there are so many parties – public and private – with interests in the road, the opinions of Old Clear Creek residents are going to determine whether this plan commences, Werner said.
The city doesn’t even know either “if Douglas or the tribe are interested in idea,” he said.
“It’s going to open up a can of worms,” said Clear Creek resident Sharon Arnold. “Most of us are happy with (the road) as it is.”
The section closest to the highway is publicly owned and in good condition, but the rest is controlled by homeowners and the Washoe Tribe. It used to be part of the old Highway 50 until the 1950s, when the new Highway 50 was built and the old one renamed as Old Clear Creek Road.
Though a private road, it’s used by other residents for hiking, bicycling and sightseeing.
Another property owner, Bob Fredlund, a real estate agent who also handles sites in the area, took out a business license from the city to operate a toll road on Old Clear Creek.
While Fredlund said government “should be taking care of the road,” he referred questions as to why he sought the business license to his attorney, Edward Bernard, who was unavailable for comment.
Turning it into a toll road isn’t possible now, Aldean said. SB392, however, would make charging a fare to use a road permissible if state legislators approve the bill during this session.
• Contact reporter Terri Harber at tharber @nevadaappeal.com or 882-2111 ext. 215.
If you go
WHAT: Meeting regarding Old Clear Creek Road
WHEN: 7 p.m. Monday
WHERE: Exhibit Hall, Carson City Fairgrounds