No one likes getting the runaround when tracking down an answer, but that sometimes happens when people try to find out about the latest road improvements in their neighborhoods.
The Nevada Department of Transportation might punt a question to Clark County. A representative there might forward the inquiry to the city, where officials declare it’s a state issue.
From the questions that come my way, I know it’s happened to a few of you.
“Sometimes as motorists or commuters driving down a road, you don’t really care if it’s an NDOT, or county, or city, or utility project,” NDOT Director Rudy Malfabon said last week during the agency’s board meeting. “You just want to know how long it’s going to be out there and what they are doing.”
The Road Warrior isn’t looking to go out of business or anything, but the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada launched the “Seeing Orange” campaign in May 2015 as a one-stop option for people to learn about street and highway construction projects. The RTC has received nearly 750 inquiries over the past three years.
Those with specific questions can log into seeingorangeNV.com or call 702-928-2663. Calls are acknowledged within 48 hours, and RTC officials deliver inquiries to the appropriate government entities.
For example, questions about Project Neon would go to NDOT. The county would handle issues south of Sahara Avenue. The city of Las Vegas would answer inquiries about Summerlin or Fremont Street.
“The increase in construction in 2014 led to an influx of orange cones, as well as a spike in driver frustration,” RTC spokeswoman Angela Castro said.
“As commuters who live, work and play in Southern Nevada, we understood their frustration,” Castro said. “So the RTC — together with the local governments — started working more closely to provide more timely information and answers to our community about what the projects are, their benefits and impacts to the community, and most importantly, when they would be complete.”
Flashing crosswalk lights
Many crosswalk lights aren’t initiated until someone presses a button at the traffic signal, but Roger from Las Vegas noticed that this isn’t the case when walking along Boulder Highway in the east valley. Roger wanted to know why the overhead crosswalk lights are constantly flashing a yellow beacon when there aren’t any pedestrians around.
NDOT spokesman Tony Illia said there are two pedestrian signals that constantly flash along Boulder Highway: one at Whitney Avenue, and another just north of Hamilton Drive.
“They are woefully outdated,” Illia said. “That is, we are tearing them down and replacing them with new pedestrian push-button activated, overhead rapid-flashing beacons.”
The work is part of a larger $2 million pedestrian safety upgrade scheduled to start by summer, Illia said. Plans call for flashing beacons, wider medians and crosswalks at eight intersections and mid-block segments of Boulder Highway.
Additionally, NDOT and the RTC are working on a $2.4 million study that will outline several short-term and long-term safety improvements along this high-speed corridor.
Clark County saw a record high of 78 pedestrians who were fatally struck on public roads in 2017 — nine of whom were killed while walking along Boulder Highway.
Red for a reason
James from Las Vegas says the emergency signal in front of Fire Station No. 42 at 7331 W. Cheyenne Avenue in Summerlin turns red “for no reason” every 10 minutes — even when there appears to be no activity.
Margaret Kurtz, a spokeswoman for the city of Las Vegas, said there was once a time when traffic blocked the fire station driveways during heavy commuter times.
At some point, city crews made adjustments so the signal would keep access open at the fire station as a way to improve response times for firefighters responding to an emergency.
Currently, the signal’s timing is coordinated with the signal at Cheyenne and Tenaya Way to keep traffic moving. For example, Kurtz said that drivers headed east on Cheyenne won’t be released from the fire station’s traffic signal until the signal turns green at Tenaya.
Questions and comments should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your phone number. Follow the @RJroadwarrior on Twitter.
Road work ahead
— Main Street is restricted between Bonneville Avenue and Las Vegas Boulevard through May. Crews are working on a storm drain.
— The D Street onramp to southbound Interstate 15 is closed through mid-July. Crews are working on Project Neon.
— Sections of Bonneville Avenue, Charleston Boulevard, Grand Central Parkway and Martin Luther King Boulevard will have closed or disrupted lanes surrounding the Spaghetti Bowl as crews work on Project Neon through July.
— Ogden Avenue will be restricted between Main Street and City Parkway through mid-October. Crews are making street, sidewalk and lighting improvements.
— The Charleston Boulevard onramps to southbound Interstate 15 are closed until mid-October. Crews are rebuilding the intersection.
— Interstate 15 will be narrowed in both directions between Sahara Avenue and D Street until Nov. 20. Crews are widening the freeway.
— The ramp connecting southbound U.S. Highway 95 to southbound I-15 will be reduced to one lane and detoured through Nov. 20. Crews are widening I-15.
— The ramp linking southbound U.S. 95 to northbound I-15 is closed through Nov. 20. Crews are widening I-15.
— The Martin Luther King Boulevard onramp to southbound U.S. Highway 95 is closed until early 2019. Crews are building a high-occupancy flyover ramp.
— Gass Avenue will be restricted between Las Vegas and Charleston Boulevards through March 2019. Crews are making pedestrians and bicycle improvements.
— Both directions of U.S. Highway 95 will be narrowed to a single lane between the 215 Beltway and Durango Drive from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. nightly through June 5. Crews are building a carpool ramp at Elkhorn Road.
— Both directions of U.S. Highway 95 are narrowed to a single lane between Skye Canyon Park and Paiute drives through July 12. Crews are building a new interchange bridge.
— Buffalo Drive is restricted between Gowan Road and Cheyenne Avenue through July. Crews are upgrading a gas line.
— Tenaya Way and Torrey Pines Drive are restricted between Gowan and Craig roads through July. Crews are upgrading a gas line.
— Gowan Road is restricted between Buffalo and Torrey Pines drives through July. Crews are upgrading a gas line.
— Craig Road is restricted between Torrey Pines Drive and Decatur Boulevard through July. Crews are upgrading a gas line.
— Both directions of U.S. Highway 95 will be narrowed to two lanes at Elkhorn Road through December. Crews are building a new carpool ramp.
— Jones Boulevard will be restricted between Tropicana and University avenues through June 29. Crews are doing sewer work.
— Eastern Avenue is restricted between Flamingo Road and Tompkins Avenue through June 11. Crews are restoring the street.
— Center Street is restricted between Burkholder Boulevard and Lake Mead Parkway through June. Crews are making various road improvements.
North Las Vegas
— The ramp linking northbound Interstate 15 to westbound 215 Beltway will be closed from 8 p.m. Monday to 5 a.m. Tuesday, and again from 8 p.m. Tuesday to 5 a.m. Wednesday. Crews are paving the road.
— The ramp linking eastbound 215 Beltway to northbound Interstate 15 will be closed from 8 p.m. Monday to 5 a.m. Tuesday, and again from 8 p.m. Tuesday to 5 a.m. Wednesday. Crews are paving the road.
— U.S. Highway 93 is restricted between Interstate 15 and Apex Power Parkway through June. Crews are widening the highway and upgrading an interchange.
— Nellis Boulevard is restricted between Cheyenne Avenue and Las Vegas Boulevard from 6 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. weekdays through July. Crews are installing sewer pipes.
The average gasoline price Friday in the Las Vegas Valley was $3.27 per gallon. It was $3.31 in Nevada. The national average of $2.92 is up 4.9 cents from a week ago, up 17.3 cents from a month ago and up 57.4 cents from a year ago.