Roundabouts OK’d at highway intersections

Posted on21 June 2013.


Negotiations with the Nevada Division of Transportation to construct roundabouts at State Route 372 intersections with Pahrump Valley Boulevard and Blagg Road have been authorized by county commissioners Tuesday.

Commissioner Frank Carbone cast the sole vote against.

Commissioners voted to allocate $ 900,000 as the county’s match of NDOT estimates to construct the two roundabouts, taken out of impact costs and another $ 900,000 toward improving a three-mile stretch of Manse Road from Homestead Road to Hafen Ranch Road, best priorities for street improvements. NDOT agreed to pay the other $ 900,000 for the estimated expense of the roundabouts and any overages.

The county commission followed up on a recommendation by the Capital Improvements Plan Advisory Committee, a 13-member board that meets quarterly, which recommended roundabouts as a visitors handle measure. The CIP board was told building would commence no later than Might 2014.

Lori Campbell, NDOT site visitors safety engineer, stated if the county wanted a site visitors signal they would have to spend for it all themselves. Nye County Public Functions Director Dave Fanning said NDOT will not permit a visitors signal at Highway 372 and Pahrump Valley Boulevard, it would be too close to the light at State Route 160.

Carbone was concerned about possessing to acquire house, possibly by way of eminent domain. He also had concerns over site visitors backing up on Highway 372 at the strategy to Pahrump Valley Boulevard.

The roundabouts have been seen as more affordable to construct than a site visitors light. Sheriff Tony DeMeo said the light at Homestead Road and Highway 160 price $ 2.3 million.

Campbell mentioned roundabouts are a systematic method NDOT is employing statewide. She stated Pahrump motorists would learn how to use them.

“That roundabout would be the greatest remedy at this place and it would be the very best answer at a lot of intersections around the state, particularly at rural intersections. That being said, if the county was able to contribute some funds to this, that would bring this high crash location to the prime of our list for improvements,” Campbell mentioned.

She said roundabouts will lessen crashes by 80 percent.

Commission Chairman Butch Borasky said he’s driven by way of roundabouts in places like Summerlin and never ever had a problem negotiating them. But he nevertheless had inquiries about placing a roundabout in a hugely congested area at Pahrump Valley Boulevard.

Fanning endorsed the concept. He mentioned the intent of roundabouts is not to cease targeted traffic but reduce crashes and targeted traffic-connected issues.

“This is something that I feel would advantage the valley if we can in fact get these things in the appropriate area for that offered speed in the amount of traffic lanes,” Fanning said.

But he mentioned there would be a lot of correct-of-way that necessary to be purchased at the Pahrump Valley Boulevard intersection and drainage difficulties. Nye County owns the little triangle at the north side of the intersection.

Borasky said motorists would have to stop for a red light at a targeted traffic signal, it would also have to be coordinated with other traffic lights.

“The roundabouts in theory you’re slowing everybody down a small bit, you slow but there’s no quit,” Borasky said. “The factor we have to be concerned about is there’s a lot of individuals who do not like roundabouts or do not know how to go around them.”

Campbell added, “if I can get it to grandmother and clarify it to her, I’m going to go with it.”

The annual upkeep expense was also a aspect. Campbell said the typical price of keeping a roundabout is $ five,000, Fanning said it is $ 22,000 per year to sustain a targeted traffic light.

Commissioner Dan Schinhofen mentioned he was opposed to the original plan to install a roundabout at Homestead Road and Highway 160 but he’s not as opposed to 1 at Pahrump Valley Boulevard and Highway 372. Schinhofen mentioned he spoke to the owner of Big O Tires, one particular of the companies that will have a new access. The county will also have to negotiate with Seemoore’s Ice Cream on Blagg Road and Highway 372.

Schinhofen stated he’d like to install one roundabout 1st to see how it goes, but Campbell said the agreement with NDOT was for both.

Pahrump Fire Chief Scott Lewis told Carbone his fire engines could travel through roundabouts, which are distinct than targeted traffic circles he knew back in New Jersey. Commissioner Donna Cox, who lives in a motor home, was concerned about senior citizens pulling them by means of roundabouts or truck drivers pulled semi-trailers.

“We have a lot of senior citizens with motor properties and one of my worries about this is confusing senior citizens,” Cox stated. She recommended spending extra funds to put a visitors light on Blagg Road and Highway 372, the motorists at the intersection with Pahrump Valley Boulevard could possibly take benefit of the light alter to cross the highway. Campbell stated targeted traffic signals at Highway 160 and at Blagg Road would be too far apart to have an effect on site visitors flow.

Borasky recalled seeing videos of the NDOT roundabout presentation displaying a truck driver traveling right by means of the middle. Commissioners were told they may possibly not want to build a statue or a nice garden in the middle of a roundabout for worry motorists will drive more than it.

But Cox added, “as considerably as I do not genuinely care about roundabouts, we’ve got to do anything at the intersections. There’s also many accidents, too numerous lives in jeopardy.”

When resident David Stevens objected, Borasky asked if he would like to be broad sided at 40 mph or have an individual lightly rear finish him?

Campbell stated motorists navigating a roundabout would slow down to about 25 mph.

“They’re driving around the United States and they’re seeing these everywhere. So Pahrump would not be the only roundabout they’d see,” Campbell mentioned.

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