LAS VEGAS, NV – With 2018 finally here, the future of Las Vegas is starting to take real shape; and nowhere is that more apparent than the much-anticipated arrival of the Las Vegas Raiders National Football team, whose new home base – Las Vegas Raiders Stadium, a $2 billion, 65,000-seat complex being built on a 63-acre plot of land located just west of Interstate 15 – officially broke ground in November of 2017 and recently overcame several new hurdles in its development while making headway towards its 2020 goal of completion.
An anticipated delay involving an underground flood channel was recently overcome via a Section 408 permit issued by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which granted developers the ability to move the flood-control culvert so that it circumvents the stadium grounds so as to not delay construction; previously, the stadium’s 2020 grand opening date appeared to be in peril due to this issue, with completion possibly being pushed back to 2021 as a result.
The flood channel provides a conduit for storm water from the Decatur Boulevard and Russell Road-based Tropicana Detention Basin to the Flamingo Wash, located in the vicinity of Flamingo Road and Swenson Street. The culvert currently runs through the Las Vegas Stadium grounds in by ways of a 6-foot tall, 15-foot wide “S”-shaped channel, after which it runs underneath several other notable Vegas properties – such as the Hard Rock Hotel and MGM Grand – before reaching its drainage point. Thanks to the Section 408 permit, the culvert will be transplanted to the west approximately 150 feet, steering it clear of the ground of the stadium project.
With the Las Vegas Raiders stadium progress back on track, the developers and team owners are now looking at addressing other issues that will eventually arise once the project is completed— namely, a need for regulating the more-than-likely increase in pedestrian traffic, as well as the availability of new emergency services that will be required by public safety laws to be local to the stadium.
Reports indicate that the Las Vegas Raiders had struck a bargain with Clark County officials to foot the $1.4 million bill for a specific set of emergency services within the vicinity of the stadium, in addition to new infrastructure situated around the stadium’s parameter in order to manage the anticipated large increase in foot traffic, including pedestrian bridges or underpass alterations to existing sidewalks and roadways, installation of traffic control devices, construction of local Las Vegas Metro Police headquarter/detention facilities, and equipment and services to deal with any unforeseen emergencies. The exact configuration of this complex web of new infrastructure has not yet reached a detailed planning stage yet; that will come once the developers submit their parking plans for the stadium to Clark County by their September 2018 deadline, which needs to account for the at least 14,000 off-site parking spaces as required by county code. Once parking has been approved, work can commence on how to manage the flow of foot traffic and other services required of a major event venue, while avoiding impacts upon local vehicle traffic.
These large-scale changes will prove to be a tricky task in a large, busy city such as Las Vegas, but in the end they will provide for a better and safer experience for both tourists and local residents alike as congestion in the vicinity of Las Vegas Stadium is sure to increase exponentially once the Raiders make their 2020 debut in Southern Nevada.
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