Carson River Trail System Projects

Carson City, Nevada

Planning for trails in the Carson River area has been a grassroots community-wide effort dating back to 1995. Through a $1.8M grant awarded from the Southern Nevada Public Land Management Act (SNPLMA), Carson City was able to enhance facilities and improve trail connectivity throughout the Carson River and Prison Hill area. The purpose of this trail system is to enhance the community by providing non-motorized open spaces tailored for pedestrians, bicyclists, and equestrians.

Lumos & Associates was selected by the City to assist with the design and development of this vibrant multi-phase trail system. This included Phase II, or Prison Hill East (with three individual trails), and Phase III, Prison Hill West. Our work for these projects included topographic survey, civil design, geotechnical engineering, materials testing and inspection, and construction management services.

Phase II included ranch connecting trails: Prison Hill East (from the 5th St. Trailhead to Silver Saddle Ranch), the Mexican Ditch Extension (extending the Mexican Ditch Trail through Silver Saddle Ranch), and Buzzy’s Ranch Trail (connecting Riverview Park with Carson River Park). For this effort, our team conducted environmental studies (wetland delineation and biological and botanical review through a subconsultant), field visits, an alternatives analysis of potential alignments, and floodplain analysis. Civil design incorporated hardened, unpaved trails up to 10 feet wide, compliant with AASHTO bicycle standards. Alignment was also done for an 8,600-foot section located along a steep section of slope. Several drainage crossings were considered with a 6,100-foot section located in the 100-year floodplain by the west side of the Carson River. The entrance to the Silver Saddle Ranch was the flattest and shortest segment (at a length of 2,400 feet), requiring consideration for vehicular traffic entering and exiting plus connectivity to the existing Mexican Ditch Trail. Construction for this phase was completed in 2020.

Civil design for Phase III encompasses improvements to the Koontz Lane Trailhead. These will include a regraded access road, parking for 20 to 30 vehicles, ADA parking, equestrian trailer parking, a vault toilet, and a covered picnic table. There will be a 2.4-mile multi-use pathway that connects this trailhead with the Clearview Drive Trailhead and the Staging Area entrance at the south end of Prison Hill. This trail will be constructed with compacted decomposed granite to provide accessibility to everyone, including families with small children and persons with mobility limitations. A crosswalk with flashing beacons will be constructed at Edmonds Drive and Koontz Lane for safer street crossing. This crosswalk will enhance access for neighborhoods on the west side of the I-580 to the Prison Hill Recreation Area and neighborhoods on the east side of the I-580 to the Freeway Multi-Use Pathway.

Lumos held public meetings to ensure the design of Phase III, or Prison Hill West, met the needs of residents and community members. This project is currently in the final design approval stage with the City, with construction expected to commence in the Spring of 2024.