Residents oppose street change

A proposed route to alleviate traffic congestion in South Carson City is already drawing the ire of residents off Hillview Drive.

Carson City Supervisor Richard Staub suggested Thursday the city should consider extending Hillview Drive south from Koontz Lane to Valley View Drive.

The project, which would allow Saliman Road to connect to Clearview Drive, drew protests from area residents when it was first proposed in 1996. Although some Koontz area residents support the idea, it will draw vehement opposition again.

"I and everybody else is violently against the proposal," Hillview resident Pat Walsh said.

Staub argued the gridlock of traffic on southerly routes including South Carson Street and Silver Sage Drive, warrant another look at the extension. One city block is barricaded at Koontz Lane, preventing free flow of traffic to Clearview. With the development in the south and the growth of the city, Staub said it is reasonable to ask area residents to share the traffic burden born by few streets.

"Every one of us has more traffic," he said. "We have Silver Sage and Edmonds. This will allow a third thoroughfare and take a little traffic off Silver Sage. It's only a city block."

Walsh said unlike the subdivisions on North Saliman, the Hillview area was not designed to be along a major thoroughfare.

"We're all built as if it were going to be a quiet, residential street," Walsh said. "The loudest sound here most of the time is birds."

Opening the road would "make the street into a racetrack.

"If you punch past Koontz, it will increase the traffic in front of two schools magnificently," Walsh said. "You're going to have everybody from Dayton and Stagecoach going down it to get to shopping. We've got kids and pets out there."

Fran McClain, who lives on the corner of Koontz and Hillview, isn't as lucky to have the quiet of a road with little traffic. Vehicles from Edmonds and Carson Street pour up and down Koontz to Saliman or Carson Street. Drivers have no choice but to use Koontz, and McClain said heavy traffic sometimes keeps Koontz and Saliman residents sitting in their driveways.

"We've been fighting this for years," McClain said. "It is now past time to open that one block and let them absorb some of the congestion we now have."

Staub said the Regional Transportation Commission has limited funds which should be used to benefit the most people. Staub asked that the RTC consider the route at its August meeting. He plans to ask that it be prioritized for funds in February's priority setting session.

"I think it's time we look at it," he said.

Staub has promoted other routes to alleviate pressure on Carson Street. Curry Street between Koontz and Clearview will be graded this summer, and asphalt grindings will be added to give the connection more of an all-weather surface. Staub championed the project in this year's transportation priority meetings.


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