A Nevada state transportation
official is urging construction of a new truck crossing over the Colorado
River to replace Hoover Dam be accelerated. New security restrictions at the
dam are requiring trucks to be rerouted.
The proposed new crossing,
about a mile down river from Hoover Dam, is scheduled to be complete in 2007.
According to the Las Vegas Sun, Transportation Director Tom Stephens told
the state Transportation Board he would like to see it finished and dedicated
on Sept. 30, 2005, which would be the 70th anniversary of the dedication of
the dam by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.Security at the dam has been increased
since the Sept. 11 attacks in New York City and Washington, DC. Only local
trucks with permits are allowed on the dam. The others are sent to Laughlin,
which adds more than 20 miles to the trip.
It would cost more to
accelerate the construction schedule, but Stephens told the newspaper it would
be worth the effort. He pointed out the dam could be shut down at any time
because of security concerns.Arizona and Nevada want the federal government
to put up about $200 million to help build the new crossing. Both states have
already set aside at least $10 million.