Letter — Bureaucratic gridlock | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Letter — Bureaucratic gridlock

Tahoe Daily Tribune

Two stories gave rise to the following thoughts:In the Enviro Report it was stated that “Our urbanization of Tahoe’s watershed and our pollution of the air quality over the lake have created millions of small human impacts.”

Susan Woods’ article on a busy, up-coming camping season has the following comments from Nevada Parks’ Allen Newberry: “And more people cart their mountain bikes to sites–especially with the Tahoe Rim Trail open. Newberry attributes the trend in part to the state’s tourism advertising campaign that targets those seeking adventure and a taste of the wild.”

Well, those seekers of a taste of the wild will be greeted by an often death-defying trip along Nevada’s portion of Highway 50. After experiencing the mostly inches-wide shoulder allocated to cyclists and negotiating wheel-grabbing drainage grates while riding wheel to bumper with 50 mph traffic, these adventure seekers may just opt to load their bikes on their cars for their next trek to an off-road adventure. This is sad because: A — we are putting our economic lifeblood (tourists) in harms way — probably NOT what the tourism board had in mind; B — we are missing an opportunity to reduce traffic and its attendant lake-choking pollution by offering visitors and residents an alternative to automotive transportation.

Why? Part of the answer lies in NDOT’s refusal to make shoulders and grates safer for cyclists. One would think that with the large project from Zephyr Cove to Spooner Summit, NDOT would use the opportunity make cycling safer. When pressed for an answer, NDOT points the finger at the TRPA, saying the agency needs to have a master transportation plan before they will respond

Where is the long awaited plan? It would seem with ‘reducing reliance on the automobile as a tenet of the TRPA’s 1969 charter, we would have had facilities for bicycles, pedestrians and efficient public transportation years ago. Instead we have are roads choked with pollution-producing traffic, a mostly insufficient public transportation system and dangerous conditions for bicyclists and pedestrians.

Tom Wendell

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