For the first time, the public will drive on the Carson City freeway - at least a small section of it.
Highway 395 in North Carson City will be narrowed to one lane in each direction from Arrowhead Drive to Lakeview Road at the top of the hill today from 7 p.m. until 3 p.m. Saturday, a Nevada Department of Transportation official said Thursday.
Motorists will be diverted onto the new northbound Carson Street on-ramp because of the lane closure.
"Traffic northbound will go under the freeway and eventually in the next couple of weeks we will widen the southbound lane coming down the hill," NDOT spokesman Scott Magruder said.
As the freeway starts to take shape, Magruder said, Highway 395 near the new bridge will undergo some changes.
"Motorists can expect some delays leaving town on Saturday," he said. " If you are going to Reno, plan accordingly. Motorists should plan on leaving 20 minutes earlier."
The closure adds yet another traffic woe to those who have been delayed because of the Roop Street closure from Beverly Drive to Winnie Lane. Roop will re-open Sept. 2.
Carson City Freeway construction has progressed steadily. The $70 million section going from Highway 395 at Arrowhead Drive to Highway 50 East will open to traffic in late fall 2006.
The freeway will be designed for two lanes in each direction with provisions for future widening in the median.
Jim Gallegos, Nevada Department of Transportation project manager for the Carson City freeway, said the next phase, from Highway 50 to Fairview Drive, will cost $40 million and construction will begin in 2006. It's planned to be completed in 2008.
The last section on the south end of town to Highway 50 at Spooner, an $80 million project, should go out to bid while the previous phase is in construction. It's planned to be completed in 2010.
Full interchanges will be constructed at Highway 50 East, at Fairview Drive and at the Highway 50 -Spooner junction at the South Carson Street intersection.
Grade separation structures will be constructed at Fifth Street, Koontz Lane, Clearview Drive and Snyder Avenue. The separations will allow traffic to pass over the freeway with no access provided to the freeway.
Due to funding, the southern project will be constructed in two stages. The first will include the completion of the interchange at Highway 50 East, a partial interchange at Fairview Drive, the grade separated crossing at Fifth Street, Linear Ditch Park multi-use path, storm drainage facilities and roadway improvements.
The second phase will include the completion of the Fairview Drive Interchange, construction of the interchange at South Carson Street, the grade separated crossings at Koontz Lane, Clearview Drive and Snyder Avenue, the remainder of the freeway drainage system, soundwalls and completion of the roadway improvements.