Truckee Town Council to revisit Mousehole and Legacy Trail |

Truckee Town Council to revisit Mousehole and Legacy Trail

It’s time for an update on Truckee’s Mousehole, the Highway 89 underpass of the Union Pacific Railroad.

At tonight’s Truckee Town Council meeting, staff will bring the council and public up to speed on a possible solution to safety, pedestrian and bicycle access, and traffic concerns at the aging tunnel.

Also on a busy agenda will be a discussion of the Legacy Trail.

As to the Mousehole, the council narrowed solutions down to two options previously: A second bore for bicycle and pedestrians, or a total replacement of the tunnel with a new, wider bridge that would allow for bike lanes and pedestrian walkways, ranging in price from $6 million to $30 million.

Recently Caltrans has been working to refine estimates of the time and effort needed to gain design and environmental approval for the project, said Public Works Director Dan Wilkins.

“We’ve asked Caltrans to give us a cost estimate ” how much money do we need to get from today to an approved and environmentally cleared project?” Wilkins said.

Winder Bajwa, Caltrans project manager said Caltrans expects to have initial engineering and environmental studies done by this fall, and draft environmental document early 2008.

While the town has not yet identified any additional sources for funding, Wilkins said as planning goes along more concrete cost estimates should become available.

“Three to six months from now we should have updated cost estimates; so far, the estimates have been very rough,” Wilkins said.

The ball is back in the town’s court for paving a portion of the Legacy Trail.

After approval from the Truckee Donner Recreation and Park District Board, town council will now consider taking ownership and easements of phase two of the Truckee River Legacy Trail for paving and maintenance. The section connects the regional park and the sports park along the Truckee River.

“Town council would be voting on whether or not to agree to pave the Legacy Trail and to take on ownership and maintenance of the trail,” said Public Works Director Dan Wilkins.

That would allow staff to start working through the logistics of turning over the easements currently held by the Recreation and Park District on Truckee Sanitary District and Tahoe Truckee Sanitation Agency lands, Wilkins said.

The trail easements would also then have to be approved by the Truckee Sanitary District and Tahoe Truckee Sanitation Agency boards, Wilkins said.

“Assuming council does agree to take on the additional role, our goal is to get the work done (paving phase two of the Legacy Trail) this summer,” Wilkins said.

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