Traffic flowing freely along reopened Roop Street |

Traffic flowing freely along reopened Roop Street

Sandi Hoover

Carson City officials opened North Roop Street Thursday after a brief ribbon-cutting ceremony, and motorists were heading freely north and south on the roadway for the first time in nearly a year.

Although there was much merriment at the occasion, few residents were happier than business owner Jan Rispin, whose 46-year-old store, Jan’s Tropics on Corbett Street, has suffered tremendous losses during the Roop Street closure.

“I haven’t had much business at all,” Rispin said at the ribbon-cutting. “When the two boys quit that I had working, I just went back to doing everything myself.”

Rispin maintained a positive spirit throughout the ordeal, however, she said.

“This is fantastic. It took too long, and it was a great hardship, but they (construction crews) were all so considerate. They have gone out of their way for all the businesses here, so you just deal with it,” she said. “This is good for Carson, and I’m sure we’re going to have better times now. This is big progress for Carson City.”

Carson City Regional Transportation Commission Chairwoman Shelly Aldean, who did the honors of cutting the ribbon, said the widening of Roop Street is part of a bigger vision.

“Our intentions of narrowing Carson Street are a bit controversial, but this was one of our north-south capacity projects, and it’s fantastic,” Aldean said.

Punching Stewart Street through to Roop Street was another part of that plan, as were the Curry Street improvements.

The project between East William Street and North Stewart Street included, among other things, sidewalks and bicycle lanes, removing utility poles and substantial improvements to a number of underground utilities.

The $4.1 million came from a combination of RTC and utility funds.

No major road projects are planned for 2011, but Phase 3 of Roop Street – between Washington and Fifth streets – is now in the design phase.