All posts tagged 395
Saturday, December 29, 2007
Letter to the Editor, Record-Courier:
As the cable barrier between the north and southbound lanes of Highway 395 inches ever so close to completion, I can’t help but reflect on my letter to the editor shortly after the loss of Nicole Snyder. Her tragic death due to a crossover accident only a few miles from home, triggered something in my soul, as I felt her parent’s pain. This was the second crossover accident that caused loss of life on this dangerous stretch of highway, made even more dangerous by the Nevada Department of Transportation’s lack of concern for a problem so simple to fix, or so it seemed to me.
My letter to the editor of this paper, as well as e-mails to the state directly, appeared to go unanswered. But then I started to see some changes. Slow to come, but changes none the less. It took another loss of life at the intersection of Highway 395 and Stephanie, this time due to the combination of a lack of a traffic light and impatience. The state responded to the cries of those close to the victim, and a light was finally placed at this dangerous intersection. Shortly thereafter, comparatively at least, work began on the median cable barrier.
At this writing, the barrier work has reached the location of Nicole Snyder’s accident. I think of her often as I pass this location, noticing the makeshift memorial placed by friends and family who refuse to forget her. Although I didn’t know her, I can’t help but feel that I did. She was one of our own … one of my own. So, I call on this county’s decision makers once again. Help her friends and family remember her officially by placing a sign in the median along side the section of the barrier that would have saved her life. Might I suggest “The Nicole Snyder Memorial Barrier”?
Thank you, Nicole. Rest in peace.
Why not, we already have A Light For Bridget.
Tags: 395 carsonvalley douglas
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
It’s the day you’ve either been waiting for or dreading. Tomorrow Douglas County gets one more stoplight as the signal at Stephanie Way and 395 is finally turned on. Traffic driving from Minden to Carson City will now have two places where they might have to stop, here and at Johnson Lane. And yes it’s a pain for everyone that drives through the valley, but it’s less of a pain than getting in an accident because somebody thought they could beat the traffic.
Plus it will be a big help to those of us who live out there. We’ll once again be able to make a left turn from Stephanie onto Hwy 395, something I haven’t done in years. I know there are those who brave the traffic and actually try to make the turn, but it’s not something I would attempt. I always go down to the light at Johnson Lane. Now I won’t have to anymore.
Of course this is a band-aid solution to the real problem of traffic in the Carson Valley, but something tells me it’s the best we’re going to get for a long time. The real answer is to make 395 controlled access, with overpasses at the major cross streets. But don’t call it a “freeway”, because then it will never get built. Not that it will ever get built anyway, not until traffic is bumper-to-bumper the whole way through the valley and the people are rioting for something to be done. The money that went to the signal could have gone towards an overpass instead, but I don’t think we’ll ever see it happen.
There is an NDOT meeting next week, on Tuesday the 23rd where the community can discuss what needs to be done with Hwy 395. It’s taking place at Jacks Valley Elementary School, from 6:30 to 9:00 pm. Whether any of our ideas will be seriously entertained is another matter. The official website mentions limiting left-turns and installing medians, and that’s about it. And the only reason medians are needed is because 395 has this ditch running down the middle of it that is notorious for launching cars into the air. So instead of, say, I don’t know, filling in the ditch, they’ll put a Jersey barrier along it, and block off left turns from Airport Road, and declare the problem solved. Genius.
If we were in California, this would have been fixed by now. There’s a flyover ramp along Hwy 50 in Folsom that’s completely unnecessary, completely, but apparently they had the money so they just built it. But Northern Nevada doesn’t warrant any money for improvements, even when the county is allowing hundreds more houses to be built and thousands more people to move here. We’re just letting kids die while making left turns instead. And meanwhile construction costs are rising daily, so the best time to start building is always right now, and even waiting until tomorrow is too late.
So keep buying those band-aids!
Update: As of 11am, it wasn’t switched on yet.
Update 2: By 5pm everything was up and running!
Tags: 395 carsonvalley douglas stephanielight
Tuesday, January 2, 2007
My New Year’s resolution should be telling myself that it’s okay to publish a story without a picture attached. I can’t tell you how many things I would see happening last year on my daily drive, but I wouldn’t write about them because I couldn’t stop to take a picture. And by the time I did finally get a chance to photograph it, it was too late. Or it just slipped out of my mind, and I never got the picture, and I never wrote the story. Everybody loses!
So here are a couple of things I’m making myself write about, even though I didn’t get a picture.
* I left town for a few days, and when I came back part of the signal at Stephanie Way and Hwy 395 was installed. It’s just one pole and two signal heads, but it’s more than when I left. Woo hoo!
Of course, it came too late for one family. And it wouldn’t be needed if NDoT would just build a couple of overpasses and turn 395 into a controlled-access freeway like it should be.
* The new Suzuki dealership is open on South Carson Street, next to Kragen’s. Right now it’s just an empty dirt lot, but this year they’re supposed to build a five-story showroom on that tiny lot. The land has sat empty for years and years, ever since they demolished Tequila Dan’s restaurant.
Also, they’ve got Smart Cars on the lot! Vroom vroom!
* Wayne Kremer was robbed.
*The Oasis trailer park next to the Albertson’s in south Carson is being demolished. The land was sold last year to a retail developer, and soon the site will be home to a strip mall and office space. But first the mobile homes had to be moved out. Many of them were moved, but a few were stripped of their valuables and left behind to be crushed by the heavy equipment. The trees were the next to go, and as of today the only thing left on the site is the two-story permanent structure that housed the park office. It’ll probably come down this week. There’s been controversy about these mobile home parks, like the Oasis and the one that was next to Bodine’s restaurant. On the one hand, they’re huge eyesores right on the main street through town. But on the other hand, they’re the only option left for affordable housing if you want to live in the Eagle Valley. Many people who work in Carson City can’t afford to live here except in a low-rent apartment or trailer park, and with the parks being sold and demolished there are even fewer available spots.
* It’s the 10th anniversary of the Big Flood of ’97, and while I remember it vividly, it occurs to me that probably a good portion of you weren’t around back then. You don’t realize how many bridges there are in the Carson Valley until all of them simultaneously close, and you end up stuck on one side or the other of the river.
* Don’t check your mail today. The Post Office is closed due to a national day of mourning for President Ford.
* We’ve had a drier-than-usual winter so far, but once again reports of a big storm are trickling in, supposedly hitting us on Thursday. Will we finally get some snow on the ground this time? Or will it pass us by once again? Either way, it looks like we’ll get more wind for sure.
* Sorry for all the junk you’ve been seeing on the site the last few days. I guess that’s the downside of building a site from scratch; you’ve got nobody to blame but yourself when the thing gets spammed.
Tags: 395 flood oasistrailerpark smartcar stephanielight suzuki weather
Thursday, December 21, 2006
There was another fatal accident at Hwy 395 and Stephanie today, in the Carson Valley. I don’t know too many of the details, I just drove by it and saw that one car had been sideswiped, bad. I’m betting that the accident would have been prevented if there was a stoplight there at that corner. If NDOT hadn’t dragged their feet so long in getting it approved. So, it’s good that they’re building the light now, but it didn’t come soon enough for someone.
Tags: 395 accident carsonvalley douglas stephanielight
Wednesday, December 6, 2006
They finally started working on the Stephanie Way stoplight this week, in the middle of the Carson Valley. I know some people who commute from Minden to Carson aren’t going to be too happy about this, but it will make things a lot safer for those of us who live up Stephanie and have to make that left turn every day.
NDOT has also learned their lesson about being respectful to roadside memorials. Last summer they were caught red-handed removing the memorial to Bridget Chambers, who was killed at this intersection. Bridget’s memorial had been rebuilt with a simple wreath of flowers wrapped around the light pole at the corner, but the problem was that construction of the stoplight required them to remove that light pole. The workmen could have just swept up the flowers in stuffed them into trash bags, like they did last year. But instead they were very careful to move Bridget’s shrine back to the fence before they took out the pole. Have a look:
I think somebody’s learned their lesson. I drove by today, and they had a backhoe out digging up the corner so they could run all the underground wires needed for the signal. And still the memorial was there, and it seemed like they were being very careful to work around it.
In a way, this whole stoplight is a memorial to Bridget. It was her death that launched the grassroots effort to get the light installed, to hopefully prevent more accidents in the future. But it’s great that they’re leaving this memorial in place too.
The $272,000 signal is supposed to be finished by February. Of course, this is happening during the winter, so a snowstorm could stretch that deadline out a bit. I wouldn’t be surprised.
Tags: 395 carsonvalley douglas stephanielight