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Author Topic: Reimagine Boulder Highway  (Read 522 times)

Bruce

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Reimagine Boulder Highway
« on: September 22, 2022, 05:28:38 PM »

RTC has a project page for a major safety and mobility improvement program for the Boulder Highway corridor, covering Charleston Boulevard to Wagon Wheel Drive: https://www.rtcsnv.com/boulderhighway/

The complete project would add center-running transit lanes, a frontage road for business access, bicycle lanes, and green strips:

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skluth

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Re: Reimagine Boulder Highway
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2022, 06:16:57 PM »

I'm not impressed. It might work between Charleston and the Desert Inn, but not beyond that. This is urbanist overkill in an area that won't be designed for urban living ever. I'm not a fan of centerline transit in suburbia where too much traffic occurs on the main drag; putting it in the middle of Boulder Highway is, IMO, an awful idea and multiple pedestrian deaths waiting to happen. I'd probably just stop the improvements after Phase 1 though the linear park needs to be xeriscaped given the desert climate especially with the Colorado River's problems. (Seriously, did someone living in Florida plan this?) The buses can travel the planned outside lane in both directions with the Phase 1 bus lanes immediately converted into bicycle lanes.

The pictures don't show it, but I'm assuming the bicycle lanes allow both e-bikes and small golf carts. There should also be no pedestrians in the bike lanes as there are adjacent sidewalks. Frankly, I'd just place a new five-lane road down the middle with barrier-park separated bike and bus lanes going each way. Plant a series of Washington palms and some fast-growing bougainvillea (plant is near-indestructible in the desert) in the barrier parks and it'll even look more like LA. Doing all that would be much cheaper than this grandiose plan.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2022, 06:19:49 PM by skluth »
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kdk

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Re: Reimagine Boulder Highway
« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2022, 07:19:36 PM »

This is an absolute waste if I have seen one.

The Boulder Highway corridor isn't a dense urban area that needs some improved infrastructure.  It's a mix of casinos, suburban style neighborhoods and lots of low income "rent by the week or month" motels that serve as apartments.

There are lots of people walking around the area day and night, and most are drugged out.  Anyone that's been in the area would see this.

I could understand if it was within a mile or two of Downtown Las Vegas.  I know Fremont East came up from a rough area into a hip area.  If this was say 2 miles from that, yes I think it could help speed up the gentrification.  But all the way down here, no way.

Plus the casinos in the area are mostly set back and have large parking lots.  It's not like they are going to turn Boulder Strip into a walkable paradise like the Las Vegas strip with something like this.
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SkyPesos

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Re: Reimagine Boulder Highway
« Reply #3 on: September 22, 2022, 07:26:13 PM »

When will Las Vegas Blvd in Downtown  and the Strip get dedicated bus lanes? Seem like it would be more useful there than in suburbia.
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My Fictional Highways

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roadfro

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Re: Reimagine Boulder Highway
« Reply #4 on: September 27, 2022, 05:05:55 PM »

Might have to go look at the full report when I have time.

I do like that RTC is looking at some options for Boulder Highway. IIRC, that road had the highest vehicle-pedestrian crash rate (or fatality rate) in the state a few years ago, if not still. Having a frontage/access roadway separate from through traffic might be good in the long term. Boulder Highway is one of the roads where RTC runs express buses (I think it was the second or third express bus line they implemented), so bus lanes won't hurt.

With that said, I'm somewhat with skluth on the center-running bus lanes. They somewhat make sense when you're running only express buses, but I don't know that they are more accessible to pedestrians. You can have even more heat island effect waiting for a bus in summertime because the bus stop shelters will be completely surrounded by pavement, and in some cases they may be closer to passing cars even with protection.

I also don't think a green linear park would actually get constructed now. Given the recent tightening on water usage due to the prolonged drought (Vegas area has recently limited size of backyard pools, restricted new water features at businesses/casinos, and further limiting and/or restricting grass in residential backyards [turf in front yards has been prohibited in new home construction for about a decade now]), it seems unlikely that this would be approved. A greenbelt here would not provide any real recreational utility or any kind of tangible benefit other than "looking nice", which won't be worth the water usage.

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Roadfro - AARoads Pacific Southwest moderator since 2010, Nevada roadgeek since 1983.

roadfro

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Re: Reimagine Boulder Highway
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2023, 11:47:50 PM »

The portion of the Reimagine Boulder Highway project within Henderson is set to begin construction in 2024

$130M Boulder Highway safety project to get underway in 2024, Las Vegas Review-Journal, 1/22/2023
Quote
The dangerous Boulder Highway corridor is still years off from being fully upgraded to improve safety.

The $130 million Henderson portion of the Reimagine Boulder Highway project is set to get underway early next year. Planners and engineers will use 2023 to complete the final design before work begins.
<...>
Construction will take between 18 and 24 months to complete when started next year, Jarvis said.

The section of Boulder Highway included in Henderson’s jurisdiction is 7˝ mile long, spanning between Wagon Wheel Drive and just past Gibson Road at Tulip Falls Drive.

The Reimagine Boulder Highway project is set to transform a 15 mile-stretch of the highway.

The project includes cutting the number of traffic lanes from six to four, upgrading pedestrian zones, widening sidewalks and enhancing street lighting.
<...>
“We’re adding dedicated lanes in the center median,” Jarvis said. “That does phenomenal things. It increases safety, it really helps with congestion and removes the buses from the travel lanes. So the buses and the cars don’t intermix.”

Along with drainage improvements also planned to address flooding issues in the area.

When constructed in 1931 as part of the construction of Hoover Dam, Boulder Highway was a largely rural area. Formerly,the highway was the area’s only freeway, carrying state Route 5, and later U.S. Highways 93, 95 and 466 near Boulder City, through Henderson and into downtown Las Vegas.
<...>
After the Nevada Department of Transportation transfered ownership of the stretch to Henderson, that removed some of the right out [sic] way limits put on business. This will allow new development to be built closure [sic] to the road.

At some point following the completion of the project, the roadway could go from being Boulder Highway to Boulder Parkway or another name to better reflect the new layout.

There’s still plenty of design work and the environmental assessment left to do on the 7˝ miles that runs through Clark County and the city of Las Vegas jurisdiction.

The Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada, Clark County and Las Vegas officials are working toward the northern half of the project. They are waiting on grants from the U.S. Department of Transportation to be awarded, that would go toward funding the project.

The remaining steps before any construction could get underway on the northern half of Boulder Highway is about half a decade away, if funding is awarded in early 2023, according Andrew Kjellman, Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada Director of Planning. The projected cost of the project is still to be determined.

If that funding is awarded the next step is the conducting of the environmental, study and preliminary engineering for the northern half of the work.

“The environmental work would take place at the same time as the engineering and we would get started once we get the grant funds,” Kjellman said. “The environmental and preliminary engineering is about a three-year process.”
<...>
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Roadfro - AARoads Pacific Southwest moderator since 2010, Nevada roadgeek since 1983.

 


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