Speedy fix for Highway 50 traffic not likely | NevadaAppeal.com

Speedy fix for Highway 50 traffic not likely

NANCY DALLAS, Appeal Staff Writer

DAYTON – Work could begin on the widening of Highway 50 east of Dayton as soon as 2002, according to state transportation officials.

State transportation information officer Scott Magruder said Friday it was possible a widening project from Fortune Drive (east of Dayton) to Chavez Road could begin as early as fiscal year 2002-03, with the remaining portion to 95A in Silver Springs started within three to five years.

“Both are on the books, but there is no specific schedule,” he said.

The widening of the highway east of Dayton isn’t on the agenda for Tuesday’s Nevada Department of Transportation Board of Directors meeting.

While Highway 50 is not even listed for discussion, Magruder said the subject can brought up during public participation or during the scheduled discussion of the Fernley to Fallon Highway 50A widening project.

“The board can discuss the earliest possible dates the project might start and whether they can be moved up, but since it is not on the agenda no action can be taken,” he said. “We have 5,500 miles of highways statewide we have to take into consideration.”

Tuesday’s agenda lists discussion on alternate Highway 50 to provide the board with information on the stretch between Fernley and Fallon and an update of the status of the proposed projects.

According to a memo from state transportation director Tom Stephens, transportation staff members have met with Lyon and Churchill county officials regarding improvements to both Highway 50 and 50A, as well as 95A from I-80 to 50A in Fernley. As a result, the state prioritized projects based on growth, traffic volumes and accident statistics. Also considered were design, environmental approvals, acquiring right-of-way and funding.

Stephens said the highest priority of a five-phase highway 50A widening project was identified as the portion of 50A from the intersection of Highway 50 and 50A just west of Leetville Junction to Fallon and the widening of 95A in Fernley.

The state is scheduled to seek contracts to build the first half of the project in January 2002 and the second half next month.

He also acknowledges Lyon County officials have expressed interest in making the widening of Highway 50 from Dayton to Fort Churchill Road a priority. The state’s proposed projects for Fiscal years 2001 through 2010 lists the starting date for this portion as 2002, with the funding source as “unknown”.

The NDOT Board of Directors will meet in the third floor Conference Room, 1263 South Stewart St., Carson City, beginning at 1 p.m. For information call 888-7440.

IF YOU GO

WHAT: Nevada Department of Transportation Board of Director’s meeting

WHEN: 1 p.m. Tuesday

WHERE: 1263 S. Stewart St., Carson City

INFORMATION: Call 888-7440