CAMPO / RTC Meeting Alert

There are a few items on June’s CAMPO/RTC agenda that are important Carson City pedestrians and cyclists! Please take the time from your busy schedule to attend these meetings and show your support for these important projects. Your presence and voice really do make a difference!

Ride with the City Supervisors

On the agenda:

  • Safe Routes to School
  • Freeway Multi-Use Path
  • Bicycle Friendly Community application review

When: June 8th, 4:30 PM
Where: Carson City Community Center, Sierra Room (west side of the building)

Full meeting agendas can be viewed here:

CAMPO Agenda
RTC Agenda

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Upcoming Meetings

There are three meetings this week (that I know about) that might be of interest to Muscle Powered members and supporters.

Wednesday, December 9 is the regular monthly meeting of the Carson Area Municipal Planning Agency (CAMPO) and Regional Transportation Commission (RTC). The closure of Old Clear Creek Rd will again be on the agenda with informational item G-3.  The following meeting, on Wednesday, January 13, will have considerable impact on bicycle and pedestrian issues. Please put that January date on your calendar, and we’ll tell you more about the agenda items about a week before the meeting.


Wednesday is also a NDOT information meeting on adding a lane to Hwy 395 northbound between Jacks Valley Rd and Old Clear Creek Rd. There are two bike implications here:

  1. By widening, the highway is made even less bike friendly. I think we should ask for an informal bike path (not a multi-use path meeting federal standards) to be constructed on Vista Grande between Jacks Valley Rd and the current end of pavement behind the shopping center, a bit south of Topsy Ln. This would provide an alternate route for people going north-south, and also access to the two shopping centers without using the highway. This Vista Grande Route is shown on the bike map as a “planned principal route”, and is in the Unified Pathways Master Plan as well.
  2. As part of the project, the Lupin Dr – Hwy 395 intersection would be redone. This is the one opposite Old Clear Creek Rd, where the frontage road and Clear Creek Rd come out to the highway. This was previously designed, but I don’t know what it looks like. This intersection is currently the end of the Route 395 bike route, but it need not be since it could cross here to Old Clear Creek Rd, and then on Vista Grande, and then to the path mentioned above. Since NDOT designed this, I’d be willing to bet that they forgot to accommodate bicycles, so now is probably our last chance to get it changed.

There is a meeting announcement at http://www.nevadadot.com/pub_involvement/meetings/displaydocument.asp?MeetingDocument=395TN.htm&ID=496. Of course it doesn’t provide any diagrams or specifications. The meeting will be at Fuji Park/Fairgrounds Exhibit Hall, 4:00 to 7:00, with a formal presentation at 5:30 and information and discussion the rest of the time. This is an informational meeting, not a hearing, so there probably will not be a chance to talk to the whole group at once, but you can certainly make your views known to the NDOT people and others.


The Carson City Board of Supervisors will be having a special meeting on Thursday, December 10, to hear about the “Nevada’s Working Capital” program for redeveloping the area around the Carson Nugget. Tammy Westergard of Carson City Office of Business Development, and Sara Jones of the Carson City Library, have invited everyone to this meeting. The best way to find out more is to go the website at http://www.nevadasworkingcapital.com/. The meeting will start at 6:00PM in the Sierra Room of the Community Center.

Roop Street Bike Lane Update

Bike Lanes were the first item on the agenda last night at the Regional Transportation Commission meeting, and Engineering firm Manhard Consulting, LTD was there to make their redesign presentation. The room was once again packed last night, but they weren’t familiar faces. Three of us from Muscle Powered attended, eager to hear the verdict.

Roop Street

As the speakers unveiled their redesign plan, it began to be apparent that things were looking good. Here’s a summary of the bike lane plan:

Summary of Changes to Include Bike Lanes

  • Four lanes throughout project varying in width from 10′ to 11.25′ (10′ wide only at Long Street intersection)
  • 5′ wide bike lane from Washington Street to Adams Street (Lane is measured from the stripe to the face of the curb, so subtract the width of the gutter)
  • 4′ shoulder from Adams Street to Beverly Drive (again, subtract the width of the gutter)
  • Left turn pockets at Washington, Highway 50/William, Corbett, and Long

The most interesting change to me was the left turn pockets. Last month the proposal was to fully delete the center turn lane. This new plan adds the turn pockets only where really needed, adding additional room for bike lanes, and reducing the amount of right-of-way property acquisition. More of the road can be utilized more of the time, and no space is wasted where you don’t need it.

Roop Street

Like I mentioned last month, the section from Adams Street to Beverly Drive is too narrow to include an official 5′ wide bike lane, so they are calling it a 4′ shoulder. I think this should still be wide enough for most cyclists, and there was talk that share the road signs should be installed along this section to enhance safety.

The commissioners asked a few questions after the presentation, but overall, the mood was great and they once again agreed that the additional costs to the project were minuscule compared to the overall project. The turn pockets are a good compromise between bicycle and auto facilities. The project is really shaping up and looks to be an improvement for all road users.

The next meeting will be in December, and will include a presentation and vote on the amount and usage of the funds available. Keep your fingers crossed! As for the rest of the crowd in the room, nobody got up and commented about bike lanes, so I’m not sure what they were there for. I left after the bike lane discussion, but the Clear Creek closure was going to be talked about near the end of the meeting. I’ll see what I can find out about this topic.

Regional Transportation Commission Meeting Report

On October 14th, Carson City cyclists attended the Carson City Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) meeting to show their support for bike lanes on the future Roop Street widening project. Cyclists were seated in every row, and I hear it’s one of the biggest crowds the RTC has seen for quite some time!

Speakers from the public included myself (Muscle Powered), Dan Allison (Muscle Powered and Safe Routes to School Coordinator), Tim Rowe (Nevada Bicycle Advisory Board and Alta Alpina Cycling Club), and Luke Wold (Wold Fitness).

Roop Street
Roop Street – Looking South from Beverly Drive

Public Works came up with a preliminary redesign of the Roop Street widening plan to present to the commissioners at the meeting. It was suggested that 5′ bike lanes could be included from Washington Street to Adams Street. Due to what I believe are right-of-way issues, the section of Roop Street from Adams Street to Beverly Drive could not accommodate 5′ lanes. It was suggested that this section could be striped with a fog line, but could not be officially called a bike lane due to the narrower width. Public Works said that these revisions would add $50K-60K to the price of the project, but one of the commissioners said this additional cost was minuscule compared to the price of the overall project…especially if it better fit the needs of the public.

With the inclusion of the bike lanes, the center turn lane was removed from the new proposal, but the plan still allowed for 2 lanes of traffic going north and south. It was pointed out that this may back up traffic if people needed to make left turns during peak traffic, but some thought the impact would be minimal. The new Stewart Street extension will allow easy access to the neighborhood to the west of Roop Street, and should alleviate some of the left turn issues on Roop Street.

Roop Street
Roop Street – Looking North from Washington Street

I had a great follow up phone conversation with Patrick Pittenger, Carson City’s Transportation Manager. A revision of the plan discussed above will be presented to the RTC in November, but would not be up for approval until December; however, he cautioned that in these times of diminishing budgets, monies available for projects today may not be available a few months down the road. It could be several months before the actual project started, if at all.

Patrick had good news to report too though. He has secured federal funds for more bicycle projects around the city that include bike lanes on Goni Road north of Arrowhead Drive, bike lanes on 5th Street from the roundabout to Hells Bells Road, and bike lanes on Washington Street from Carson Street to Roop Street.

We also talked about the recent addition of bike lanes on Winnie Lane west of HWY 395 (see Dan Allison’s post on the Muscle Powered Blog for more details), and clarification of the Roop Street plan for bike lanes on Roop Street between East Winnie Lane and Northridge Drive. This section of Roop Street over Lone Mountain will have 8′ bike lanes in both directions, and a pedestrian path on the east side of the road. This is fantastic news for northern Carson City cyclists trying to get to the trails on the west side of town!

I would like to thank everyone who took the time out of their busy lives to come down and show your support for a more bicycle friendly Carson City. The mood of the RTC was visibly brighter than a month ago when we first began our discussions, and this is due to your collective enthusiasm. I’ve found that the city is usually very open to suggestions if you can demonstrate that the people are interested. That’s just what we did Wednesday night.

And finally, when I was out this morning getting pictures for this post, I decided to ride down Roop Street, since the traffic was fairly light. Along the way I imagined that I was riding on a path, and it was great! It was nice to ride a direct route to work instead of my typical labyrinth of side roads. I didn’t have to go through several rain gutters, up curbs, through parking lots, or dart across traffic. This can be fun sometimes, but sometimes you just want to relax.