Work could start soon on final phase of bypass |

Work could start soon on final phase of bypass

Dave Frank

The state could start preliminary work on the final leg of the Highway 395 Carson City bypass by the end of the year.

Construction of Koontz Lane and Clearview Drive bridges above the future section of the bypass are a priority for the Nevada Department of Transportation, said Scott Magruder, a department representative.

The $15 million for the work would come from federal and state funds, he said.

The work doesn’t mean the state has set a date to finish the project, but it is good news for the final phase, Magruder said.

“It’s saying it’s still a priority,” he said. “We’re going to do everything we can to secure funding.”

The final $140-million to $190-million phase will connect the bypass with Highway 50 West at the base of Spooner Summit leading to Lake Tahoe. The state transportation department has said because of a lack of funding it does not know when it will finish the project.

Work on the $45-million leg of the bypass from Highway 50 East to Fairview Drive is scheduled to be finished this summer.

The possible preliminary work isn’t everything the city wants, but “progress is progress,” said Patrick Pittenger, city transportation manager.

He said the city will do everything it can to push the project forward.

“This is definitely positive,” he said. “The fact that NDOT has made an indication they will move forward with a portion (of the bypass) is a significant step.”

The possible work reaffirms the fact that the bypass will be finished despite delays, Mayor Bob Crowell said.

“It means it’s going to happen,” he said. “We’ll make it happen sooner or later so hopefully that means sooner.”

Magruder said the state is looking for money everywhere it can to finish the bypass. Where that money will come from is the “million dollar question,” however, he said.

Crowell said the last phase of the bypass is a good candidate for federal stimulus money. It is mostly designed and ready to build, he said.

“Now the question is the money and getting the funds,” he said.