A greenway on Nevada St?

Please watch the StreetFilms video on Portland’s neighborhood greenways, and think about the applicability and practicability for Carson City.

Portland has a grid street system, except for the west hills and the far suburbs, and Carson City does not have a grid except in a few areas, so it is difficult to identify locations where a street parallel to the arterials and collectors could be prioritized for bicycle use.

But Nevada Street immediately popped into my mind. It runs a fair distance, about 1-1/2 miles from nearly Winnie Lane on the north to 10th Street on the south. It is already a fairly calm street, so it would require less traffic calming than would many other streets. A few speed humps (like the one on Division Street), a reduction in the speed limit to 15 or 20 mph, bulb outs and/or bicycle and pedestrian passthroughs at major street crossings (Fifth Street certainly, and perhaps Musser, Robinson, Washington and Long) to discourage through motor traffic, and orienting signs for bicycle free flow, would create a bicycle friendly route.

As shown in the video, the greenways create comfortable and practical routes for all sorts of bicyclists, not just regular commuters who feel comfortable riding in traffic. I can imagine it being a part of our yearly Bike to Work Week cruiser ride. The route passes close to Fritsch Elementary School, and is not far from Bordewich Elementary. It also provides access to downtown from both the north and the south.

The idea is that only people who live on Nevada Street would be using their motor vehicles on Nevada Street. Others might be on for a short distance, and would use cross streets, but the nature of the street would be a place friendly to and safe for bicyclists, pedestrians, kids, dogs, etc.

What do you think? Would it work in Carson City? Is Nevada Street the best place for a pilot? What traffic calming actions would make the most difference? What other streets might be good candidates? How would you make use of the neighborhood greenway?


9 thoughts on “A greenway on Nevada St?

  1. I’ve always thought Nevada street would make a good bikeway – it’s the street I use to ride from my house downtown. It accesses Fritsch School too.

  2. Nevada Street would make a good bikeway route. It’s also my choice of driving route from 10th Street as far as Robinson, when I want to get downtown from the south, but I could forego that and move over to Division Street with the rest of the cars if necessary.

  3. I agree Dan, Nevada St. is the logical choice for a north-south bike boulevard. For very selfish reasons I’d like to submit Long St. as the west-east bike boulevard. (Donna, you would be the envy of us all).

    As for other streets, I like Minnesota Street. From my experience it has the least amount of traffic and the least amount of parking related congestion. And with the Brewery Arts Center plans to close Minnesota St (if that is still in the works), it would stop motor vehicle through traffic (between King St. & Second St.), perhaps requiring fewer traffic calming techniques, thus possibly lowering the cost of the project.

    Also, Minnesota St. runs from Williams St. to Tenth St. The corridor, I feel, receives the most traffic. While the streets north of Williams St. are relatively quiet.

    Thanks for doing this Dan.

  4. @6dogs: I also thought about Minnesota St, but it was not my top choice just because it does not continue as far north. Yes, Brewery Arts Center still wants to close the block of Minnesota between King and Second. I’ve also thought about an east-west corridor, and Long St was definitely on my radar, but I think we need to do a pilot on just one street to see how it goes, and north-south is an easier one to accomplish as the first one, I think.

  5. I’d also agree with Jeff about Minnesota street – I actually use it as much or more than nevada street, depending on where I’m going. While it ends up at the old hospital parking lot, it’s easy to get from there to Mountain Street and Fritsch School. It’s also good access to the BAC. Maybe pursue both of them?

  6. I’ve thought about Nevada Street as a Bicycle Blvd. for a few years now. It would definitely be my pick, since it’s close to downtown, and goes so far to the north and south. Having said that though, would our efforts be better spent on getting bike lanes on Mountain Street? Getting the speed down with narrower car lanes, parking only on one side of the street to allow for more room for bikes… I see Mountain Street as the connector to King Street and Winnie, both of which currently have bike lanes. Washington also crosses Mountain, another good candidate for bike lanes as it connects to Roop Street on the East, our soon to be longest bike lane in town!

  7. @Jeff Moser: My reason for pushing the neighborhood greenway is that it is a pilot of something we don’t currently have in Carson City, and if successful, could lead to more. We have bike lanes we can point to, and say “we want more of those”, and we should, but we don’t have a low speed, “friendly to all modes” route to point to. Bike lanes work well for those who use them, but many people won’t use them because they don’t want to be riding along with traffic. Portland realized that bike lanes would bring bicycle mode share up to about 10%, but if they wanted to get to 25%, they would need to create facilities that ARE safe and FEEL safe for many more people. I want a place where every person feels comfortable, where kids can play in the street, where people have priority and motor vehicles must yield to them. It is not just a bicycle route, it is a public space, for everyone.

    @Anne: I would like to focus on just one street, and I picked the one I think we can be most successful with. Being just one block from downtown is a big draw to me, because people can use the greenway to get somewhere worth going to. Minnesota is largely residences, and is two blocks further away from downtown. I’m realizing that the Portland video puts people in the mind of bicycles because it was mostly filmed following a bicycle train, but the purpose of the greenway is about all modes, especially kids and families.

  8. As a resident of Nevada Street I am absolutely in favor of making it a Green Street. But I’m sure it will be an uphill battle, especially with the residents along the street. Can we get our hands on some nice looking educational material? I think before we even consider going to the Board of Supervisors we start working on the residents to get them behind this idea. I’m willing to ‘walk the street’ and talk with people, especially if I have some ‘pretty’ hand outs.

  9. @Donna: There are no educational materials other than the Streetsblog video, but some could be created. I think we should present the idea to Carson City Public Works staff and Carson City Regional Planning Commission first, then talk to people on the street, then have a formal proposal for the RTC. I’m not sure what the best order is, but if we are talking to people on the street and it generates controversy, the city will feel blindsided if they haven’t heard about it first.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s