UNR District Project

Thank you in advance for your patience and partnership as we work together to Transform Virginia Street!

When will construction begin?

The Regional Transportation Commission of Washoe County is planning a major roadway construction project that will make significant changes to Virginia Street between Interstate 80 and the West Stadium Parking Complex. The RTC anticipates construction activities will begin in April 2020 continuing through November 2020, weather permitting.

As the construction dates draw closer, RTC will begin providing regular construction updates that will include more detailed information about construction activities, traffic control and detours. For information about the project visit VirginiaStreetProject.com and follow RTC on social media. People can subscribe to receive project updates through the website.

What are the traffic impacts?

We anticipate lane closures and minor detours on Virginia Street from 8th Street to the West Stadium Parking Complex.

Driveway closures of one hour or more are possible during construction activities. Businesses will be given at least 24-hour notice of driveway closures. The RTC will maintain access to businesses and residences. The RTC will also provide business signage, pedestrian walk routes and communicate where parking for business will be located. The RTC project team will have a dedicated construction liaison who will work directly with businesses and the construction team to provide businesses information in advance. The RTC project team will also be available to provide information, answer questions, and respond to concerns during construction.

What are the improvements?

The Virginia Street Bus RAPID Transit Extension Project is an $87-million investment in our community to improve safety and mobility along this heavily traveled corridor. The project will extend the RTC’s existing RAPID Virginia Line service from Meadowood Mall all the way to UNR. When the extended transit route launches in 2021, the RTC anticipates an increase in ridership on this route. UNR and the community will benefit from the RAPID service and stations because of their convenient locations and quick access to destinations along Virginia Street from UNR to downtown Reno, Midtown Reno, and Meadowood Mall.

The bus route that will extend to UNR is the RAPID Virginia Line transit route, which is an enhanced transit service. The route has features that allow buses to go more quickly, with fewer stops, than on regular bus routes, including transit stops approximately every half mile, raised level-boarding platforms to allow passengers to get on and off quickly, dedicated bus lanes in some locations, and technology that allows the bus to communicate with traffic signals to help keep the route on schedule.

The RAPID routes (Virginia Line and Lincoln Line) are the highest-ridership routes in RTC’s transit system. Extending the RAPID Virginia Line to UNR will increase ridership while providing students, faculty and staff with an enhanced travel option through the Virginia Street corridor in Reno. In addition to the RAPID station, other improvements include the addition of wider sidewalks that meet ADA standards, bicycle lanes, and a center median in some areas.

Parking is limited in and around the UNR campus, which can impede access. Transit helps improve access and walkability, reduces pollution, and is a sustainable solution that contributes to a better quality of life for those who live nearby transit stops and choose to ride transit.

Highlights of the project include:

  • RAPID Bus Stations on both sides of Virginia Street
  • Sidewalk improvements (along Virginia Street between Maple Street and the West Stadium Parking Complex entrance)
  • A roundabout on Virginia Street at the entrance to the West Stadium Parking Complex to improve safety and traffic flow
  • Restriping of the roadway from two lanes of traffic in each direction to one traffic lane and one shared bus/bicycle lane for both northbound and southbound traffic flow

What about parking?

Parking is limited in and around campus, even without construction taking place. Those with parking passes or using UNR parking garages will see minimal parking impacts, but street parking will be affected during construction. UNR students, faculty and staff are encouraged to use RTC transit, which is free with a University ID as part of RTC’s UPASS pilot program.

Will construction be ongoing during special events?

University special events are important to our community. We are working with UNR staff and special event organizers to minimize construction impacts during events. Construction operations may not be active during special events, but traffic control will be in place. The project team will ensure the construction area is safe, clean and UNR is accessible during special events.

Can I ride my bike?

Yes.  The project corridor will be an active construction zone, but bicyclists are permitted.

Where can I get more information?

For more information text VIRGINIA to 797979 to receive text updates.

Thank you in advance for your patience and partnership as we work together to improve our community.