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Road improvements in southwest Las Vegas valley a relief for drivers, businesses

KSNV – Las Vegas logo KSNV – Las Vegas 8/13/2022 Denise Rosch
© Provided by KSNV – Las Vegas

When employees with Short Line Express Market on Fort Apache checked their surveillance camera last month, they were greeted with a wall of water.

Images of rain falling sideways, pounding into the parking lot, from just one of the summer storms to hit the valley during the 2022 monsoon season.

“It was like a river of mud,” says worker Francine Whalin, describing what generally happens on Fort Apache Road in the rain.

And she says a recent road project in the area added to the problem.

Caption: KSNV

“It clogged everything up,” says Whalin. “Anybody trying to get onto Fort Apache, it was just nonsense.”

Now, big improvements have been made. Work wrapped up just a few weeks ago to widen Fort Apache to two lanes in each direction from Huntington Cove Parkway to Warm Springs Road.

Clark County added bike lanes and improved lighting, in addition to the work on storm drains.

“I'm really happy to see construction done. You have no idea how happy I am,” says motorist Rocky Giordani.

He drives through the area every day and says the past few months have been tough.

“Sometimes you're late for work because of it. The lanes would back up,” explains Giordani. “You never knew if it was going to be one lane or six lanes that you're going to get that day.”

Flooding has also been an issue farther south along Fort Apache towards Blue Diamond Road. In 2019, neighbors in that area were left cleaning up mud and debris after one especially heavy downpour.

Residents at the time told News 3 the water was flowing for a solid 12 hours.

According to the county, the next phase of improvements for that stretch could begin next year.

Back at the Short Line Express shopping center, Tatiana Hickey works as a hairdresser at Member Cuts. She says one good thing about road work: Motorists stuck in traffic tended to stop by.

“Now people are flying by and they can't notice us here, so I don't know what's best,” she says. “When they were stopped and looking around, or now they're flying by?”

Still, she knows road conditions are greatly improved.

And Whalin says business at the convenience store is too.

“Our sales have gone back up and gas volume has gone back up,” says Whalin. “And that was the big key.”

County Commissioner Justin Jones will be holding a news conference about the Fort Apache improvements on Monday,

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