Transition to flashing yellow arrows takes patience


We are in a state of transition. You could argue this is always true, but let’s not get too philosophical. This is a traffic column.

Long ago, there were no traffic lights at all. Soon, they appeared.

Eventually, green left turn arrows arrived, which is probably when road rage emerged. These lights were great, except they made you wait when no one at all was coming in the other direction.

Green circles started popping up, used in combination with the green arrows. It seemed like our problems were solved. Except these lights weren’t the safest things ever invented.

Then some genius came up with the flashing yellow left turn arrow, and the world was made of puppies and rainbows, and the sky was filled with glitter, and the sun shone every day.

We’re transitioning right now, to the puppies and glitter and rainbows. Be patient.

Philip wrote in with a complaint. He said he is a longtime resident of Peccole Ranch on West Charleston Boulevard. Heading west, he takes a left onto Apple Drive to get home all the time. Anyway, Philip said a new traffic light at the intersection has “totally disrupted” his daily commute.

I used to live in Peccole Ranch, and I also used that left turn. It can be a dangerous turn. The folks coming down Charleston tend to go a tad bit faster than the posted speed limit.

There used to be one of those combination green arrow and green circle lights. Now, it’s just an arrow that’s either red or green.

What’s weird is that a sign says you must yield to traffic when the arrow is yellow; but the reality is, it’s never yellow for more than a few seconds. The sign is a big tease.

I checked in with both the city of Las Vegas and the Regional Transportation Commission on this one. The light is in the city, but traffic signal timing is an RTC thing.

It turns out, they did put a new light in. It’s going to be a flashing yellow arrow. Soon.

The city is waiting for the contractor to finish some final work. It should be done in days, not weeks.

Diana Paul, a city spokeswoman, and Julie Schaller, an RTC spokeswoman, tweaked the whole puppies and rainbows thing a little bit, though.

This light probably won’t be a flashing yellow arrow all the time. During rush hour, for instance. It’s too busy.

Jo wrote in with this one, which you might remember me mentioning here last week: “Why isn’t the extensive work on Lake Mead (Boulevard) between Rampart (Boulevard) and Tenaya (Way) not listed in the Sunday column? There are steel plates everywhere and huge pipes going under the intersection of Buffalo (Road) and Lake Mead. The double left turn lanes are down to one lane north and south. Scholar Lane was closed at Lake Mead for almost a week. Traffic delay signs are everywhere, and it is a mess.”

It wasn’t listed because I didn’t know about it. There are scores, probably hundreds, of road construction projects going on around town.

There’s no way I can keep up with all of them. I depend on the various government entities to let me know about them.

That’s the reality.

No one told me about this one.

I asked around, and the folks over at the city of Las Vegas whisked off an email with the details.

This work is part of a sewer rehab project that runs along Lake Mead Boulevard from Rancho Drive to Hills Center Drive, and it will last until at least October.

The project will repair or replace 23,000 feet of sewer line and 88 manholes. The work will occur overnight in nonresidential areas and during the daytime in residential areas.

Thanks, Jo, for letting everyone know about it.

For all you bus riders out there, note this: The RTC announced that some changes are taking effect today as a new service contractor takes over.

There are far too many changes to go into here, but note that in general, they include later or earlier operating hours, increased service at some bus stops, and some modifications to some express routes.

For a detailed listing, check out this link: rtcsnv.com/press-archive/rtc-transit-service-changes-to-go-into-effect-july-7

One of the more frequent complaints over the past few months has been the Sunset Road project between Valley View and Decatur boulevards.

Guess what?

It’s all done. Sunset opened a little over a week ago.

The $13.3 million project included a bridge allowing Sunset to pass under the railroad tracks, an underground storm drain system, sewer work and a whole bunch of lanes for cars and such.

Like I said: We’re transitioning to full-time puppies and rainbows.

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