Forum green-lights Grass Valley traffic discussion |

Forum green-lights Grass Valley traffic discussion

Grass Valley drivers will have the opportunity to question experts and air concerns at a transportation forum Wednesday night. The forum follows last week’s public discussion of Nevada City’s traffic situation.

Traffic planning in Grass Valley is a contentious and critical issue, KNCO reporter Tracy Corris said. Following the recent debate about the Chapa-De health care facility and the importance of the proposed housing and commercial developments, Corris said he expected a significant crowd.

Attendees will be able to question City Councilman Gerard Tassone, Planning Commissioner Lisa Swarthout, Caltrans engineer Tom Brannon and Dan Landon, the executive director of the Nevada County Transportation Commission.

Corris, KNCO’s JoAnn Chartier, and Richard Somerville, editor of The Union, will moderate.

The panelists will discuss the long-delayed Dorsey Drive interchange, the intersection of Idaho-Maryland Road and E. Main Street, and several downtown roads including the delayed alignment of Washington and Bennett streets, Corris said.

In addition, Corris said he intends to probe the panelists on plans for McKnight Way and the widening of Highway 49. Brannon will discuss Caltrans plans for construction on westbound Highway 20.

Corris said he also expects the status of the developer-sponsored traffic study on the intersection of Crestview Drive and Highway 49.

SouthHill’s Catlin Properties and Northstar’s Sandy Sanderson are splitting the cost of a $442,000 study that will investigate the need for an interchange ” with on and off ramps ” at the Crestview/Highway 49 intersection. If constructed, the Northstar and SouthHill Villages developments would add 2,300 residences and bring thousands of vehicles to Grass Valley.

In addition, Corris said he plans to question the panelists about the need to address effects of development cumulatively rather than project by project.

Brunswick Basin traffic issues are not scheduled to be discussed because the area was addressed at the Nevada City forum, Corris said.

The two-forum series, which has been sponsored by KNCO and The Union, is intended to provide the public access to traffic experts and the opportunity to comment on future transportation plans.

“A lot of interesting things came out of the (first forum) and I expect the same (Wednesday),” Corris said.

The discussion will be broadcast live on KNCO 830 AM and Comcast Channel 14. Viewers and listeners will also have the opportunity to call in with questions during the second hour of the forum. It will also be covered in The Union and

It will be held at the Grass Valley City Hall, 125 E. Main St., from 7 to 9 p.m.

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