Virginia Street Project Weekly Update | March 20, 2020

Virginia Street Project Team to Expedite Construction Operations

Virginia Street to Close to Traffic from Mt. Rose Street to Center Street
In response to recent events, RTC and SNC are working to accelerate impactful construction operations on Virginia Street. The Project Team has reached out to many of the business owners in Midtown who are supportive of the plan to expedite construction operations.

Beginning Saturday, March 21, 2020 at 6 am, Virginia Street will be closed to though traffic from Mary Street and Center Street (roundabout construction) to Mt. Rose Street.

Traffic will be detoured to Holcomb Avenue. There will be no through traffic for this section of Virginia Street, but side streets will remain open so people can access essential businesses and pick up their to-go food orders from Midtown restaurants. This closure will be effective 24 hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week until April 17, 2020. This date is based on businesses potentially re-opening, per the Governor’s mandate. Traffic will continue to be one-way southbound on Virginia Street from Liberty Street to Center Street. After April 17, traffic between Mary Street/Center Street to Mt. Rose Street will be one-way, southbound only until construction is complete in this section.

The Project Team received inquiries from business owners asking if accelerating construction during this time was a possibility. This past week, the Project Team reached out to Midtown business owners within the project boundaries between Mt. Rose Street and the Mary Street/Center Street intersection to determine if they would support closure of Virginia Street within this section to accelerate construction activities. Business owners expressed strong support of the plan to expedite construction operations.

Crews have already started the removal of the roadway’s deteriorated asphalt on Virginia Street. Beginning on Saturday, March 21, construction operations will progress to close Virginia Street between Mt. Rose Street and Mary Street/Center Street. Closing Virginia Street to all traffic in this section allows crews to remove the entire roadway at once, instead of half of the roadway at a time. These construction operations were originally scheduled for late April. SNC anticipates this may result in a five- to six-week time savings for this segment of the project.

Adjusting the schedule and resources to complete removals now, while most businesses are closed, will result in fewer impacts when businesses are able to reopen. The Project Team will work with businesses to accommodate deliveries from their vendors, customers to pick-up to go orders and safely access businesses.

Transit Detour

RTC’s Route 1 and RAPID Virginia Line will detour northbound on Holcomb Avenue and Center Street, and southbound on Liberty Street to California Avenue to Forest Street. Check route and schedule information at rtcwashoe.com.

Support Midtown Businesses:

To show support of businesses during this time, SNC will purchase carryout lunches from Midtown restaurants as often as possible for the construction crews. We encourage the community to support businesses in similar ways during this time.

Here are some ways everyone can help: 

  • Curbside/Takeout, Delivery, Online Ordering – Yelp has provided a list of Reno/Sparks businesses who are providing these services. Note, your favorite business may not be on the list, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t also providing these services. Make sure to call ahead to confirm and wash your hands before and after pick-up!
  • Purchase online gift cards – Many businesses offer online gift card purchasing. This is a great way to support your favorite businesses now and enjoy later.
  • Pay for your service in advance – If you had a scheduled appointment for a professional service such as hair, nails, or a spa treatment that has been cancelled, ask your provider if you can pay for your next appointment now.

Construction Look Ahead

All operations are weather permitting.
University of Nevada, Reno

  • Crews will begin the demolition of the buildings located on the east side of Virginia Street between 8th Street and 9th Street on Monday, March 16. Construction work associated with building demolition will generally take place Monday through Friday between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m., although could go as late as 7 p.m. on some days, and could include some Saturday work. The demolition in this area will make way for roadway widening, a transit station, a bus lane, a shared bike lane, and wider sidewalks.
  • Visit the University of Nevada, Reno section of our website for University of Nevada, Reno-specific construction information. Sign up to receive the University Stakeholder update, too!

RTC Operations and Transit Services

RTC Transit:
Governor Sisolak has classified transit as an essential community service. Heightened awareness of coronavirus may cause service delays, and we apologize for any inconvenience. The RTC is making adjustments as needed to continue serving our customers.

The RTC 4TH STREET STATION North Building, South Building and Customer Service window will be closed to the public indefinitely to minimize public interaction in the interest of everyone’s safety. Customer Service can be reached by calling (775) 348-RIDE (7433). To purchase tickets, Ticket Vending Machines are located outside of 4TH STREET STATION on the middle island near Route 15 and Route 5 as well. Tickets can also be purchased by downloading the Token Transit app on your smartphone or mobile device.

Transit passengers can continue to expect the increased frequency of our sanitization and disinfection practices using a strong disinfectant approved for use against COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) on our transit vehicles and at RTC transit centers. Go to rtcwashoe.com for information and to sign up for Transit Alerts and follow RTC on social media for updates.

RTC Administrative Offices

The RTC remains open for business, but effective Friday, March 20 at noon, administrative and transit customer service offices will be closed to the public to minimize potential exposure to and transmission of COVID-19. The public is asked to reach out to RTC’s departments by phone or electronically using the email addresses below. Calls and emails will be answered during normal business hours, Monday through Friday.

These changes are designed to help safeguard the public and RTC employees against the potential spread of COVID-19 in our community. This situation is fluid and is subject to change, as needed. Go to rtcwashoe.com and follow RTC on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

Disaster Assistance for Small Businesses

The Small Business Administration (SBA) is now offering low-interest disaster loans for working capital to those that are in need of a cash infusion in order to forestall layoffs or shut downs. These loans are also available to non-profit organizations. The loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid due to the economic impact of this pandemic. The loans provide a maximum of 30 years for long-term repayment. Terms are determined on a case-by-case basis. Deadline to apply to December 17, 2020.

Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov for more information on SBA disaster assistance.