Trails, bridges and highways to be improved – copy of plan included |

Trails, bridges and highways to be improved – copy of plan included

People interested in building trails, making Highway 49 safer, getting the Dorsey Drive interchange or increasing public bus routes have the chance to help form the county’s plan of action in the coming years.

A public workshop on the mission and goals of the Nevada County Transportation Commission will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday in the Nevada City Council chambers at 317 Broad St. in Nevada City.

“We want to ensure that the mission, as we perceive it, is the same as what the citizens want,” said commission executive director Dan Landon.

The commission serves as a liaison between the state government and local governments to plan transportation projects and get money to pay for them.

“We get control of certain state funds and have some leverage with that to get money to local governments,” Landon said.

In that role, commissioners are gearing up for a cycle of planning for new projects and applying for state money. They want to make sure the public gets a say in the direction those projects are going, Landon said.

In the workshop, participants will look at the commission’s mission statement and current projects, and discuss whether they reflect the community’s priorities.

Some of the current projects being contemplated include:

• Dorsey Drive interchange, for better access from Highway 20/49 to Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital;

• Improvements to Highway 49;

• A regional transportation mitigation fee;

• Building a roundabout at I-80 and Highway 89; and

• Improving the Highway 89 Mousehole.

Projects to protect the rural qualities and historic character of the county include:

• Restoring the Bridgeport covered bridge;

• Money for the Nevada County Historical Society’s Narrow Gauge Railroad and Transportation Museum;

• Money for the Truckee River Legacy Trail; and

• Improvements to the Highway 49 bridge over the Bear River.

Other projects also could be brought to the fore, including restoring service of the Gold Country Stage to North San Juan and Colfax, Landon said.

Commissioners also are concerned about planning to better connect the county to regional transit corridors, including:

• The Tahoe Gateway Intelligent Transportation Plan;

• The Capitol Corridor Extension; and

• Developing pedestrian and bicycle trails.

Traffic planners hope the public workshop will help set priorities for county transportation and stir fresh ideas for funding them, Landon said.

Commissioners also have hired a public opinion company, Fairbank Maslin & Maullin of Oakland, to poll county residents about their transportation concerns.

To contact staff writer Trina Kleist, e-mail or call 477-4231.

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