LAS VEGAS (KLAS) – Months of traffic headaches are speeding to a potential peak come this week’s Formula One races, but the racing giant and state transportation department say measures to prevent drivers from getting stuck have been taken.
F1 has established an “outer perimeter” to the circuit multiple blocks outside the resort corridor in all directions. Las Vegas Grand Prix (LVGP) Project Manager Terry Miller told Clark County Commissioners last week that 39 electronic messaging signs were deployed to redirect those headed towards the race and 3.8 miles of public road closures because of it.
“That begins to tell drivers and vehicles what to expect,” Miller said, speaking to the board about the signage on November 7. “This is the hard stop. You’ve got to turn right. You’ve got to turn left. You cannot come any further.”
If drivers don’t get the message, multiple road construction projects are now settling dust in Southern Nevada until after race weekend. Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT) Senior Project Manager Ryan Wheeler said most of these projects were scheduled before F1 announced the Las Vegas circuit.
“In some cases, we have paused,” Wheeler said inside the Las Vegas Convention Center Tuesday morning.
The closest project to circuit activities: ‘Dropicana.’ Equipment for the multi-year freeway overpass project has been pushed to the side, giving an extra lane back to drivers traveling I-15 North at Tropicana.
The temporary diverging diamond interchange has also been temporarily altered to allow more lanes while leaving and entering Las Vegas Boulevard from this access point.
“It’s all been in an effort to maximize the throughput of traffic during this F1 event, so that people can get from their homes or hotels to the event, or vice versa,” Wheeler said.
Will this all be enough to keep traffic moving like the exotic sports cars on the circuit? Miller adds there will be almost 400 flaggers stationed both along the circuit and streets directly outside of it before, during, and after the track turns hot.
“We got flaggers through the entire area to make sure people are moving and understand how they can get where they need to be,” Miller said.
The circuit – encompassing parts of Las Vegas Boulevard, Harmon, Koval, and Sands – begins to close each night at 5:00 p.m. Thursday through Saturday before reopening by 4:00 a.m. the next day, according to LVGP.