Carson City officials recently decided to install a signal light at Northridge Drive and Roop Street near the new Wal-Mart Supercenter because of the high traffic counts at the intersection, said city Engineer Larry Werner. But it could be up to six months until the light is installed. Until then traffic congestion is expected to grow.
"It's very needed for safety reasons," said Ridgefield Drive resident Glenn Dacayanan. "The intersection is similar to what it was like coming from Winnie (Lane) and making a left. It's a few minutes wait."
A traffic light was recently added to Winnie Lane and Roop Street, south of the subdivision.
Regional Transportation Commission engineer Harvey Brotzman said the work must first go out to bid and that will take about two months. The contractor will then order the materials and that can take 17 weeks because signal light parts are specialized and suppliers don't often keep them in inventory, he said.
Brotzman said he is working on the signal's design. The cost to the city is not yet known because construction costs fluctuate over time.
Less than half a mile north is East College Parkway, the main access route to the 203,000-square-foot supercenter. Some commuters seeking the shopping center, or at least easy access to Roop from College, have found their way blocked by orange barrels and plastic barriers.
A 300-foot section of Hot Springs Road off Roop Street is closed. A new intersection will be constructed at Roop and Hot Springs, slightly more south from the previous intersection, within the next few months. This intersection and signal will give customers access to the Wal-Mart parking lot on the west side of the store. Werner said that intersection will likely be open in the next two months. Hot Springs starts at Carson Street and will end at Roop.
To access Wal-Mart, drivers must turn from East College Parkway at the new signal onto Retail Road. The road is still labeled as Hot Springs because the new signs have not yet been installed. Werner said that should happen shortly. A secondary access is available at Market Street, which is about 300 feet east of the new signal. It also does not yet have a street sign.
"We didn't want to get the street signs up until the signal was operating," he said.
Although the new signal at East College Parkway and Retail Drive malfunctioned for most of the morning of the supercenter's Wednesday grand opening, software problems with the light have since been corrected.
n Contact reporter Becky Bosshart at firstname.lastname@example.org or 881-1212.