Mayberry Drive Reconstruction Moves Forward Without Roundabout

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RENO, Nev. - The RTC decide on Friday to move forward with plans for the Mayberry Reconstruction Project, but not include a roundabout at the intersection of Mayberry Drive and Hunter Lake Drive.

"This was largely due to the public comments we received and most people saying they were against a roundabout at this location," said Joe Harrington of the Regional Transportation Commission of Washoe County. "We really do value the input of the public on all our projects and pride ourselves on being open and transparent."

The $1.1 million dollar project is set to begin next year.

"There will still be a lot of improvements happening at this location," Harrington said. "The existing signal is out of date and needs to be updated so we'll put a new one in that will have better vehicle detection. We'll also work on the pavement and make improvements to make the area more accessible for everyone. This will bring the location into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act."

Most of the comments the RTC received from the public were against the idea of a roundabout.

"This is fantastic," said Reno resident Stewart Tatem when he heard the news. "We have kids that go to Reno High so we go through this intersection daily and I'd much rather have it the way it is now. I'm glad they decided to kill it."

But some residents were in favor of the idea.

"I'm ticked off; I want the roundabout," Hunter Lake Drive resident Jeff Johannessen said. "When the light stops here traffic is backed up in the school zone all of the time."

Johannessen, a realtor, says he spends three or four hours a day on the road.

"The communities that have roundabouts, like Somersett, I like them," Johannessen said. "I didn't at first but now I see how they keep traffic flowing. We're free Americans, why have a red light make you stop and a green light make you go if it's open you can just go, no big deal. To anyone that likes freedom of travel, why have a red light stop you?"

Taking out the roundabout does drop the project cost significantly. However, there's been some confusion about how these types of funds can be used.

"Any cost that would have been added with a roundabout concept couldn't have been diverted to fund more Reno Firefighters as some have suggested," Harrington said. "This is a fuel tax project and this is a dedicated revenue source for transportation projects."