By Alan Snel of LVSportsBiz.com
The natural scenery of Red Rock is breathtaking along SR 159 and SR 160.
The manmade scenery of fast-moving cars and motorcycles — and dangerous motorist behavior — is also part of the dynamic along these busy corridors.
It’s no secret that LVSportsBiz.com has publicized the need for the state Department of Transportation and state police to dive into these corridors and manage them to improve the safety for the growing number bicyclists, runners and walkers who use the state roads’ shoulders as cars and motorcycles routinely whiz by at 70 mph on roads where the speed limit is 50 mph.
Neither Clark County, the state nor the feds have built a parallel paved trail along the roads in the right-of-way to improve safety, though there is a plan to build a trail from Summerlin through Bureau of Land Management-controlled land. But that trail, which is kind of like the River Mountain Loop Trail in style and hilly terrain, is not physically close to the SR 159 roadway.
As the Red Rock scenic drive and the conservation lands grow in popularity and attract more visitors, the two-lane road that leads from the fast-growing suburb of Summerlin to the Red Rock Loop is seeing more problems with motorists parking on the paved shoulders, making U-turns out of nowhere and whizzing along the road at breakneck speeds.
Groups like Save Red Rock and the Southern Nevada Bicycle Coalition — along with many other people — have long informed the Nevada Department of Transportation about the dangerous travel conditions along SRs 159 and 160.
The state DOT this week have staged community meetings to gather comments about SRs 159 and 160 and even offered a survey, asking about types of improvements and concerns. Check out this site to weigh in with your thoughts.
In addition, LVSportsBiz.com was told there’s a meeting on that trail project on April 14. It’s 6 PM and it’s via zoom.
LVSportsBiz.com recommends a Red Rock 159 and 160 game plan of:
-Banning vehicles from parking on the paved shoulders
-Designating specific spots to make U-turns
-Cracking down on speeders with more police enforcement
-Building a paved trail next to SR 159 from Summerlin to the Red Rod Loop entrance/toll station ASAP
-Implement traffic calming strategies
-Install “Move over a lane for bicyclists” signs on SR 160
-Install a Red Rock Canyon welcome sign that advises motorists to slow down, be alert for bicyclists/runners and not park on paved shoulders
-Keep SR 159 at 2 lanes and do not widen road