Road improvements ongoing around Truckee | SierraSun.com

Road improvements ongoing around Truckee

Greyson Howard
Sierra Sun

Long- and short-term solutions for an increasingly busy intersection on Highway 89 north are underway.

The Town of Truckee, East West Partners, Tahoe Truckee Joint Unified School District and Caltrans are working towards a solution for the intersection at Highway 89, Prosser Dam Road and Alder Drive.

With the new middle school on Alder Drive and the Gray’s Crossing development straddling the highway, traffic at the intersection has been and will continue to increase. A roundabout is planned for the summer of 2008 to manage traffic flow, according to Tony Lashbrook, Truckee town manager. Meanwhile, a way to deal with turning traffic until then is also moving forward.

The interim plan is to put in a left turn pocket for northbound traffic turning onto Alder Drive, which requires an encroachment permit from Caltrans.

Plans for the permit, along with processing fees, have been submitted, said Gregory Bickett, an engineer working for East West.

Don Schmitt, a permit writer for Caltrans, said they had received the new plans, but had not started processing them.

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“It may be approved on the first go through, or it may go through revisions,” Schmitt said, “it generally takes about a month.”

John Britto, the facilities director for the school district, said that the turn pocket was important for the school.

“It won’t be open in time for school, but it is supposed to happen,” Britto said.

Meantime, the school district encourages drivers to take Pioneer Trail Road to Comstock Drive to get to the school, rather than turning at Alder Drive.

East West Partners, as part of the Gray’s Crossing, are working on Prosser Dam Road through the new development. Work includes a class one bike path on north side of road, underground utilities, a single-lane roundabout at Prosser Dam Road and Henness Road, two golf cart under-crossings and a traffic-calming chicane on Prosser Dam Road, said Rick McConn, Gray’s Crossing’s project manager.

The Town of Truckee and East West will be working together to resurface that stretch of road, with the town contributing $200,000 because the road was in need of an overlay prior to the Gray’s Crossing project, Lashbrook said.

The roundabout being constructed at Brockway Road and Martis Valley Road is ahead of schedule. Originally planned for completion at the end of September, the new roundabout will go through final paving next week and only has landscaping and irrigation remaining after Labor Day, said Todd Landry, Town of Truckee’s senior engineer.

While earlier in the year the budget for the project rose nearly $1 million, to a total of $1.85 million, Landry said he expects the project come in under the $2.5 million budget that had been requested from the town.

The agreement between the town, the Greens at Ponderosa, and Ponderosa Village was also re-negotiated from 30 percent of costs going to the two developers to 35 percent responsibility, Landry said.