Town funds traffic control study for busy Highway 89 | SierraSun.com
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Town funds traffic control study for busy Highway 89

JOHN A. BAYLESS, Sierra Sun

The Town of Truckee is funding a study on the Highway 89 corridor into Truckee, to examine traffic control alternatives and possible ways to make the “mousehole” railroad overpass at the entrance to town safer.

“It will examine whether to put in traffic signals or a series of roundabouts on Highway 89 South,” Town Engineer Dan Wilkins said. He said the focus of the study will be on future development such as the Intrawest project and its impacts on Truckee traffic.

“It will come back with a long range vision of the corridor, so as development continues to occur transportation improvements are done in a consistent, logical fashion,” Wilkins said.

The Town of Truckee and the Nevada County Transportation Commission established a budget of $35,000 to conduct the Highway 89

study in 1999-2000. The study will examine the Highway 89 corridor in Truckee from Donner Pass Road to West River Street.

“It will specifically look at the intersection of Donner Pass Road and Highway 89, the Interstate 80 on ramp and off ramp on Highway 89, the Deerfield Drive Intersection, West River Street and the mousehole,” Wilkins said. “The idea is to develop a long range community vision.”

That vision could very well include more roundabouts.

“We believe the roundabout we built last year has been very successful,” Wilkins said. “It’s worth at least considering them on future projects.” He said that because Highway 89 is a state road, any roundabout would have to be approved by the state before construction.

“One of the products of the study would be to determine the state’s position on roundabouts and the mousehole,” Wilkins said. “If the state will not consider roundabouts, then we won’t waste time on it.”

He said the intersection of Donner Pass Road and Highway 89 is a logical place for a roundabout.

“It’s the same thing Vail did when the main access to the town was an unsignalized interchange,” Wilkins said. “Vail elected to put in a roundabout and it has been successful.”


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