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Kings Beach Core Project Set to Begin Construction
Published on April 02, 2015
With an early start to this year’s construction season, the Kings Beach Commercial Core Improvement Project is ahead of schedule. The county’s Department of Public Works is managing the project. April marks the beginning of the second year of this major project and last year’s work is readily apparent. The 1.1-mile stretch of Highway 28 through the center of this North Lake Tahoe community is now a three-lane roadway with roundabouts, sidewalks, bike lanes and many other amenities. And while the above-ground work is apparent, a considerable amount of last year’s construction was underground. In fact, last year’s construction completed 95 percent of the underground work that was needed before the remaining topside work could be done.
“This project has been a long time coming and we’re pleased with the work that’s been completed, excited about the upcoming construction and the prospect of finishing this year,” said DPW Deputy Director Peter Kraatz. “This work is transforming the stretch of Highway 28 through Kings Beach and the neighboring community into a gem that sits next to one of the most beautiful beaches in the basin.”
While it is hidden from view, the underground work will have a significant effect on improving the clarity of Lake Tahoe’s blues waters. The project has three main goals: create a more pedestrian and bicycle friendly environment, improve aesthetics and improve water quality. These last features include drains, pipes, catch basins, vaults and treatment devices that will trap, retain and treat storm water runoff. A large part of the degradation of Lake Tahoe’s clarity can be attributed to runoff that often flows unimpeded into the lake. Keeping untreated, clarity-damaging sediment from entering the lake will improve its clarity. When completed, the Kings Beach Project’s will trap an estimated 40 tons of fine sediments before they reach the lake.
Last year, construction crews installed the subsurface infrastructure that will control and treat the runoff. Other work included moving utilities underground and repositioning existing underground utilities to allow for construction. The remaining drainage improvements will be completed this year, along with continuing sidewalk installation both on Highway 28 and in the grid, the mainly residential neighborhood north of the highway.
The project contractor, Q&D Construction, completed 65 percent of the work for the project. This year the remaining work is expected to be completed before winter. The Tahoe Basin construction season closes at the end of October. With the Tahoe Basin’s shortened construction season, reducing the time needed for completion has a significant effect on the busy summer visitor season.