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SR 28 National Scenic Byway
Map - Location - Challenges - Opportunities - Solutions - Benefits - Timing - Project Partners - Contact

Eleven miles of undeveloped shoreline, the longest stretch at Lake Tahoe, parallels Nevada State Route (SR) 28 south of Lakeshore Drive in Incline Village. This two-lane, mountainside road is the only access route for over one million recreating visitors and 2.6 million-plus vehicles per year.

And its popularity is growing. But the area’s sensitive resources suffer due to a lack of coordinated solutions for safer, adequate access to a variety of desired recreation. Until now...

In an unprecedented response to the safety and environmental concerns, the Tahoe Transportation District (TTD) partnered with 12 agencies to develop a Corridor Management Plan (CMP) for SR 28. While recognizing individual jurisdictions, it creates a platform for effective collaboration to protect and enhance this section of “America’s Most Beautiful Drive.”


Map Click on map to enlarge.

Location

The CMP includes the area from Crystal Bay to U.S. Highway 50. The area south of Incline Village to U.S. Highway 50 has a priority focus due to traffic congestion. This CMP has been broken into four segments. One includes Crystal Bay through Incline Village as the community center area, and the other three are located in the southern section of the corridor: Incline Village to Sand Harbor, Sand Harbor to Bliss Pond and Bliss Pond to U.S. Highway 50. Short-term goals focus on the three-mile section from Incline Village to Sand Harbor State Park.

Map of SR 28 Corridor Management Plan Recommendations

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Challenges

Recreation demand is double the existing parking capacity (1,175 vehicles looking for parking at the overall peak time and only 582 paved spaces). This results in a multitude of challenges. Perhaps the biggest is “shoulder-parking.”

The areas are narrow, often at the edge of steep inclines with limited sight distance. Safety and erosion are important concerns. The number of vehicles parked along the shoulder is growing every year – almost 170% between 2000 and 2011 – and projected to double by 2038.

Safety is critical as the road has almost triple the Nevada average for crashes and injury accidents. Pedestrians (nearly 2,000 at peak overall demand) are forced to walk in travel lanes. Vehicles pull off and on. Traffic slows and becomes congested as vehicles, trying to enter Sand Harbor’s typically full lot, back up for almost a mile.

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Opportunities

The plan connects Corridor challenges with opportunities that can be grouped into five primary and inter-related benefits. To address these opportunities and realize the benefits, project partners identified their agencies’ strengths and highlighted potential collaboration.

  • Improve Safety - Design for fewer accidents, zero fatalities. Provide safer pedestrian, bicyclist and motorist choices. Construct emergency turnouts and viewpoints.
  • Protect the Lake - Reduce erosion with appropriate parking, trails and access. Ensure water quality by reducing fine sediments that reach the lake.
  • Enhance the Visitor Experience - Manage capacity at current levels. Enhance recreation alternatives. Promote value to future generations.
  • Expand Multi Modal Transportation Choices - Encourage riding transit, bicycling and walking. Connect off-highway parking to transit. Construct a “wilkeable” (walking/biking) shared-use path.
  • Promote Economic Vitality - Encourage collaboration. Establish public/private partnerships. Reduce resource impacts.
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Solutions

Several projects to streamline traffic flow, as well as conserve the SR 28 Scenic Byway's environmental and recreational assets, are being evaluated and/or developed. A primary goal is to maintain the existing visitor use levels while improving safety and enhancing the visitor experience. Solutions include:

  • Relocating shoulder parking and providing safe environmentally appropriate parking.
  • Providing summer transit service along the East Shore for safe visitor access during peak demand periods.
  • Improving access with trail system connectivity to parking and recreation destinations.
  • NDOT environmental improvement projects to reduce fine sediments reaching the lake, helping water clarity.
  • Improving accessibility and safety by enhancing visitor amenities such as vista points and emergency pullouts.
  • Technology-based improvements that assist and guide visitors to their destination and help traffic flow.
  • Co- location of utilities with trail improvements where feasible to reduce cost and reduce construction delays on SR 28.
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Benefits

The SR 28 Scenic Byway traffic-related initiatives are designed to make the area safer for residents and visitors while maintaining visitor use levels and enhancing their experience. By providing alternatives to car use and shoulder parking, the projects also focus on protecting/preserving this unique and sensitive section of Lake Tahoe shoreline as well as improving lake clarity.

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Timing

Projects are at different stages of development with varying schedules. The summer shuttle service between Incline Village and Sand Harbor State Park, a pilot program named East Shore Express, began June 2012 and ran again summer 2013. The bicycle and pedestrian path between Incline Village and Sand Harbor is slated to begin construction 2015. The co-location of utilities and bike trail is entering a preliminary analysis summer 2013.

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Project Partners
   
 
 
 
   
     
   
 
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Contact

We welcome your input.

Please address written comments to:
Tahoe Transportation District
PO Box 499
Zephyr Cove, NV 89448

email: info@tahoetransportation.org

FAX: 775.588.0917

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