Editorial: bypass congestion
Motorists who commute between Carson City and the Carson Valley already know the congestion they face at peak times on Highway 395.
What do they think it’s going to be like when a couple more stoplights and a few major stores are added to the stretch between the Spooner Summit intersection and Jacks Valley Road?
It’ll make traffic jams in downtown Carson look mild.
A major bottleneck seems inevitable, unless cities, counties and the state start planning some solutions. There is an obvious way around the mess, but so far nobody is talking about it.
Events in recent days have brought fresh attention to the tightening traffic news in south Carson City.
A redesign of the Carson freeway intersection places a stoplight at Highway 50 on traffic headed south to the Carson Valley, then another one at Clear Creek Road. Motorists who sometimes see traffic stacked up at Clearview Drive can only imagine what will happen in another 10 years with two more traffic lights interrupting the flow.
The addition of a Target store at Jacks Valley Road has turned that into a busy intersection. A Home Depot, opening in February, will increase the load.
So there’s good reason to think a Costco at Clear Creek Road and, if the trend continues, a few more major stores on the Douglas-Carson line will bring some major traffic headaches.
The fact is Highway 395 is the only way to get from Carson City to Carson Valley. That need not be always true.
To the east, a road connecting Vicky Lane with Snyder Avenue would give the population of Johnson Lane a short alternative. It not only would get traffic into south Carson City, the route gives motorists another way to get onto the planned freeway at a Fairview Drive interchange.
Nobody likes to talk about this back route between Johnson Lane and Carson City right now, because officials are still trying to sell the Highway 395 corridor’s high traffic count to the Targets and Costcos of the world.
For the people who have to drive the Highway 395 bottleneck, however, it would be nice to know someone is planning a little bypass just for them.