Political signs are popping up like springtime flowers as Nevadans prepare for another round of federal, state and local elections this year.
Candidates have to obey a few rules when posting those placards, which tend to look as fatigued as voters by the time the November general election rolls around.
Even though the candidates are trying to get in our heads, their signs can’t block our views of the road.
Campaign signs measuring less than 4-by-8 feet may be posted along freeways and highways, said Tony Illia, a spokesman for the Nevada Department of Transportation.
Anything larger than that requires a nonrefundable $200 permit if the signs are posted within 660 feet of federal and state roads. Illegal signs are carefully removed and stored at the NDOT maintenance yard in downtown Las Vegas.
“Signs that distract drivers, block the views of motorists, resemble official traffic signs or interfere with maintenance of our roadsides are not safe,” NDOT Director Rudy Malfabon said in a prepared statement.
Similar rules prevail in local municipalities.
Clark County spokesman Dan Kulin said political signs aren’t allowed within the public right of way, while posting them on private property requires permission of the property owner.
In Las Vegas, Henderson and North Las Vegas, officials said political signs cannot exceed 128 square feet in commercial and industrial areas.
However, the cities split when it comes to posting political signs in residential neighborhoods. Las Vegas limits the size to 16 square feet in residential zones, while the maximum size in Henderson is 18 square feet and North Las Vegas allows up to a whopping 32 square feet.
Henderson has a strict policy of campaign sign removal within 10 days after Election Day — which seems like a long way from now. A little more time is allowed in Clark County, Las Vegas and North Las Vegas, where the deadline to remove signs along roadways is 15 days after the election.
Melissa from northwest Las Vegas said that ongoing construction along southbound U.S. Highway 95 has created a shortened onramp at Durango Drive, giving her roughly 30 feet to merge with traffic.
“We cannot safely get up to 55 mph and merge in such a short time,” Melissa wrote in an email to the Road Warrior. “I almost got hit recently because nobody obeys the speed limit to begin with.”
Illia, the NDOT spokesman, said this ramp currently meets all federal traffic control and design standards, but motorists can expect it to close for eight days in August as crews work on a flood control channel. The construction is part of a $78 million widening of U.S. 95 between Ann and Kyle Canyon roads.
Randy from east Las Vegas wrote to the Road Warrior about a year ago, wanting to know when the potholes and rough patches along Hollywood Boulevard would be smoothed out. At the time, county officials assured us that relief was around the corner.
“While it’s true Hollywood recently underwent a lot of work, only the western half of the road was completed,” Randy said. “Why was the job left half-finished?”
Kulin, the county spokesman, said an improvement project planned for Hollywood between Charleston and Lake Mead boulevards was put on hold so Southwest Gas could complete a separate project in that area. Construction is expected to start sometime this spring.
Jones-ing for improvements
Andrew from the southwest valley noticed that Jones Boulevard is pretty rough between Blue Diamond Road and Cactus Avenue and wanted to know if the county planned to make any upgrades.
Kulin said an improvement project is expected to start sometime next year. Some sections of Jones between Blue Diamond and Cactus will be repaved and widened.
Flashing yellow fluctuates
Patricia from the east valley wanted to know why the county stopped using a flashing yellow arrow for drivers headed from northbound Eastern Avenue to westbound Robindale Road.
Kulin said the flashing yellow arrow operates only when traffic is light at this intersection, but it gets switched off during the peak morning or afternoon commutes because of high traffic volumes and speeds.
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Road work ahead
— Eastbound Tropicana Avenue will be restricted over Interstate 15 overnight work from 8 p.m. to 4 a.m. Monday and Tuesday. Crews are repairing bridge joints.
— Oakey Boulevard is closed to through traffic beneath Interstate 15 until 5 a.m. Tuesday. Crews are demolishing a freeway bridge.
— The right lane on northbound Interstate 15 at Flamingo Road is closed until 6 a.m. Friday. Crews are restriping the road and installing signs.
— The ramp linking northbound U.S. Highway 95 to southbound Interstate 15 is closed through mid-April. Crews are widening the interchange.
— The outside lane of southbound Interstate 15 is closed between Sahara Avenue and Flamingo Road through late April. Crews are erecting traffic management signs.
— The outside lane of northbound Interstate 15 is closed between Flamingo and Desert Inn roads through late April. Crews are erecting traffic management signs.
— 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.
— 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 are narrowed to a single lane between Skye Canyon Park and Paiute drives through July 12. Crews are building a new interchange bridge.
— 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.
— Center Street is restricted between Burkholder Boulevard and Lake Mead Parkway through June. Crews are making various road improvements.
North Las Vegas
— 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 $2.94 per gallon. It was $2.96 in Nevada. The national average of $2.65 is up 5 cents from a week ago, up 11 cents from a month ago and up 33 cents from a year ago.