Sandoval: Reno Spaghetti Bowl top priority Nevada highway project
December 17, 2015
CARSON CITY, Nev. — Joined by other members of the Nevada Transportation board and local officials, Gov. Brian Sandoval on Monday termed redesign and reconstruction of the Reno Spaghetti Bowl as a top priority for the coming years.
"I don't want to wait 18 months to find out what we already know: that the Spaghetti Bowl is oversubscribed," said Sandoval.
NDOT Director Rudy Malfabon told the board they are studying the project and preparing a presentation on it at the January meeting and planning a presentation to the Regional Transportation Commission of Washoe County on Friday.
Reno council member Neoma Jardon, who chairs RTC, and Executive Director Lee Gibson both told the board the Spaghetti Bowl project is the area's top priority.
But Sandoval questioned what exactly needs to be done there: "Does that need to be blown up and start again? Is improving it putting lipstick on a pig?"
Gibson said the 50-year-old interchange that ties Interstate 80 and Highway 395 together in the middle of Reno/Sparks was designed to meet needs that have grown dramatically.
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He said it would be a bad move to make compromise changes that don't bring the interchange up to modern standards and needs.
"This is like a 1960s design and it's just got to get fixed," he said. "I want to try avoid 10 years from now having to do this all over again. We need to be realistic about what the impacts will be."
He made it clear the challenges will not just be finding the money but the right-of-way battles.
"We're going to have some very significant financial and legal challenges in front of us," he said.
Jardon said the Spaghetti Bowl is such a priority for her that, "I have put it on every standing meeting agenda in the past two years."
"The Spaghetti Bowl will be our top priority and also our top federal priority," said Gibson.
Visit nevadadot.com to learn more about the Nevada Department of Transportation.