City of Las Vegas plans to correct trailhead parking issue

Did someone forget to plan ahead?

The Summerlin area's newest trailhead at Hualapai Canyon Trail on the east side of Hualapai Way between Town Center and Alta drives is ready for use, but there's no parking lot included, and street parking is not allowed.

"It's a great amenity but no real great place to park," said Steve Wolfson, Ward 2 city councilman. "So, we're working on it."

The city of Las Vegas formally opened Hualapai Canyon Trail on March 27. It extends east from Hualapai Way for approximately one-half mile adjacent to the Tournament Players Club at the Canyons Golf Course and loops back.

The Las Vegas High Rollers and Strollers, a walking club about three dozen strong, organizes two walks a month with a hiatus in the summer. Its membership is keen on ensuring that trails are accessible to the disabled. John Oszajca, president, said he could not think of other area trailheads that did not offer parking, even if that parking was at a next-door shopping center or public facility.

Not to have one at a trailhead, he said, "makes it awkward for starts and stops."

Tom Perrigo, sustainability officer for the city of Las Vegas, said the trail was envisioned as one that would connect to others in the area, similar to Summerlin's trail system.

"It's the same kind of concept," Perrigo said. "This allows access for the public, while keeping a natural preserve (atmosphere)."

Perrigo added that when the Nevada Cancer Institute builds its second campus at the Hualapai Way-Alta Drive intersection, that could provide the needed parking. But the cancer institute is having financial troubles, and plans for the site have been put on hold indefinitely.

Jace Radke, public information officer for the city, said the lack of parking was not a case of one department not talking to another.

"The concept was to provide an amenity to the trail system, to make it accessible to those on foot or on a bike," he said.

He said it was never intended to have parking.

Yet Hualapai Canyon Trail has a trailhead, is a loop design and is not directly connected with other trails.

Radke said Wolfson was working with the city staff on an option for parking, with those talks in the early stages.

Construction of the trail began in August 2009, and it was officially named by taking suggestions from the public.

Both sides of the 10-foot-wide trail are landscaped, with amenities such as rest areas, benches, trash receptacles, pet waste stations and trail lighting to enhance it.

Funding for the $3 million trail was provided by the Bureau of Land Management through the sale of public lands as authorized by the Southern Nevada Public Land Management Act. The act keeps money from Nevada federal land sales in the state for park and trail projects. The city of Las Vegas Planning and Development Department developed the trail concept and secured federal funds for construction, and the city's Public Works Department managed the project.

Wolfson said the city was "looking at solutions to correct the problem."

Contact Summerlin and Summerlin South View reporter Jan Hogan at or 387-2949.