Construction delays repaving

This week we’re going to address a mish-mash of questions without a theme. Basically we’re all over the map, so strap on your seat belt and join the ride.

Joel has a couple of questions: First, When the Rainbow Boulevard/Highway 95 interchange was replaced circa 2004, Westcliff Drive was destroyed by the gravel and heavy trucks. In some spots (especially eastbound approaching Rainbow), you can’t even see the lane markings. Is there a light at the end of the tunnel?

The light is fast approaching, but first the city of Las Vegas has to finish an $8.7 million flood control improvement project that covers several locations including Westcliff Drive from Rainbow Boulevard to Lorenzi Street. The city was holding off on repaving because so many construction trucks are using those roads and the work would have gone to waste.

According to city spokeswoman Debby Ackerman, the contractor, Contri Construction, estimates that paving and striping work at the Rainbow-Westcliff location should be done this weekend. It should all be back in good shape this summer, after the project wraps up and the construction trucks are gone and when all of the temporary traffic control devices are removed from the area.

Secondly: I ride a motorcycle and HATE the left left-turn lane from Buffalo Drive northbound to Lake Mead Boulevard westbound. It seems like the asphalt became liquid at one time. The first time I used this lane, I nearly fell off my motorcycle because the deep valley in the lane caused my bike to lean so hard. Are there plans for a fix in the near future?

Joel, you may have prompted the city to do something. Debby Ackerman said the city has tentatively scheduled an overlay project in 2012 for Buffalo between Charleston Boulevard and Lake Mead. It’s tentative because it depends on the cash-strapped city’s ability to fund the work.

“In light of this inquiry, however, we are looking into making some short-term improvements at the northbound turn lanes in the near future, but given traffic and cost considerations, we cannot provide scheduling and work scope parameters at this time,” Ackerman said.

Rutting at Las Vegas intersections is problematic because of the high traffic volumes and the intense summer heat, but the city realizes Buffalo is especially troublesome because of other age-related deterioration problems. Joel, your neighbors should thank you.

Bruce needs help: My grandson attends a small parochial school on West Cheyenne Avenue. The traffic on this section of road is traveling well above the posted speed limit of 45 mph. My question is, how do you get the city to put up a couple of static “caution” signs to perhaps slow folks down.

Bruce, you can probably better describe what you see in this area so that hopefully something can be done to protect your grandson and other students who attend that school. You can call the city’s traffic division at 229-6327 and air your concerns and they’ll go check it out. If you don’t get a response, give me another holler.

Samuel is curious: We see vans along the freeways offering emergency road service to those experiencing car troubles. The vans have signage stating the service is a contracted service through the Nevada Department of Transportation. What is the name of the contracted company who owns it, what is the value of the contract and when was it bid?

Samaritania Inc. operates the Freeway Service Patrol vans under a four-year, $5.7 million contract, the most recent being awarded in 2007, according to NDOT. The program, which offers free assistance to motorists in distress and responds to calls related to debris in roadways, is funded with National Highway System dollars.

Samaritania pays for its 11 employees in the Las Vegas Valley and all of its equipment. This is not a dispatch program, so there is no phone number to reach these freeway-traveling saviors; they simply cruise along the valley’s highways in search of motorists in trouble. However, motorists in need of help can call *NHP (*647) and dispatchers will contact the freeway assistance company.

If you have a question, tip or tirade, call Adrienne Packer at (702) 387-2904, or send an e-mail to roadwarrior@ Include your phone number.

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