The next presentation on the Carson Street portion of a downtown makeover, now at the 60 percent design stage, is anticipated Sept. 21 at Carson City’s Community Center.
The Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) will review the partial design and provide a forum for anyone wishing to comment on it at this stage, which will include items stakeholders have told the design team they would like to see or have included. The RTC session is to begin after the 4:30 p.m. meeting of the Carson Area Metropolitan Organization finishes in the same Sierra Room location at the center on that third Monday in September.
The presentation then could well delete two trees that had been contemplated outside the wooden Masonic Lodge building at the southeast corner of North Carson and Washington streets. Chet Hayes, master of Carson Lodge No. 1, appeared at last Wednesday’s presentation before the Redevelopment Authority Citizens Committee (RACC) to seek their deletion from the 60 percent design. He cited the building’s recognized historic status and urged something different there.
“We don’t really want any changes that would obscure this historic, wooden structure,” he said of the yellow building at 729 N. Carson St. He said it would be best if there were no trees or planters, but open space on wider sidewalks. He reportedly also was concerned about tree roots that could disrupt the old structure as trees grow and the roots spread.
Mike Bennett of Lumos & Associates, the lead design firm, told RACC members the 60 percent design stage includes items on peoples’ wish lists and implied some would be gone when the 90 percent design stage is released in November. Among elements already removed between the 30 percent stage and now were four street parking spots near state government buildings just north of 5th Street on Carson. He said concerns about terrorism activity had been mentioned.
“It will be more of a pedestrian area,” he said. He also talked of a few changes in the proposed plaza on a closed West 3rd street, but his RACC presentation mainly was about the Carson Street part of the makeover. The RACC bypassed action on the matter, awaiting more information and possible options at 90 percent design in November.
RTC members, however, will have the next chance for review and possible action at this stage closing in on two-thirds of design. City government is using the two panels for reviews and input and design should be done by the end of December, with construction expected to start in March, 2016.