This week, readers want to know where to look for online help while on the go, and when engineers will quit fussing with Blue Diamond Road.
And the Road Warrior finds out that the No. 1 concern of California-bound travelers is still ... No. 1.
Sam Yudin asks: Is there a comprehensive and comprehensible Web site showing all road construction in the Las Vegas Valley? It would be beneficial to be able to see that projects are in the process of being done and what is planned, and also to know expected completion dates and the scope of each project.
Unfortunately, there is no one all-encompassing Web page that covers all projects at the local, state and federal levels of which I'm aware.
If you would ask state officials, they would probably recommend safetravelusa.com/nv/, which offers real-time info on incidents, closures and construction on state-managed highways such as Interstate 15 or U.S. Highway 95. That leaves out regional roads of importance, such as the Las Vegas Beltway.
What I think is a better site is also available through the Nevada Department of Transportation at nevadadot.com/traveler/construction_projects. There, users can find a roundup of state highway construction projects in Southern Nevada and related lane restrictions.
Also on that page, links are provided to road project summaries from Clark County, the city of Las Vegas and the California Department of Transportation, encompassing many local byways and out-of-state thoroughfares outside of NDOT's jurisdiction but of use to Silver Staters.
Other links connect to Las Vegas traffic cameras dispersed throughout the valley, Nevada Highway Patrol closures and incident reports, and traffic updates from Las Vegas-area media, including the Review-Journal's own Web site.
Jay Porter asks: Any idea when Blue Diamond Road will be finished?
Not for a long time, Jay.
While work has been wrapping up on widening Blue Diamond Road, also know as state Route 160, between Decatur Boulevard and Interstate 15, there's more work getting set to start west of Decatur that'll keep commuters slaloming around orange barrels for at least another two years or so, according to the Nevada Department of Transportation.
One project that's set to begin will reconstruct mostly two-lane Route 160 to as many as eight lanes between Decatur and Rainbow Boulevard. As part of that work, engineers also plan to build a bridge carrying the road over Union Pacific Railroad tracks near Jones Boulevard.
Then, early next year, engineers will start a project to create a four-lane stretch of Route 160 between Buffalo Drive and the state Route 159 turnoff.
Both project segments are expected to finish sometime in 2009.
My advice? If you're a southwestern Las Vegas Valley resident and your car lacks a decent stereo system, now would be the time in invest in a decent CD player. You'll almost certainly be using in-car entertainment much more than you'd like in the coming months and years.
Hit 'n' Run: Road Warrior unindidcted coconspirator Greg Brackett appreciated our recent update on the fate of a shuttered California rest area along I-15 near the Cima exit.
But Brackett thought plans for rehabbing the potty pit, which will cost $8 million and take at least three years to complete, portends a poor performance on the so-called Global War on Terror.
For $8 million, "they could build a small city," Brackett wrote in an e-mail. "This rest stop was closed many times in past years and the state never seems to get it right.
"How can we win the war in Iraq if our government cannot even keep a simple rest stop open????" Brackett wrote.
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