NDOT officials clear up confusion with new HOV lanes

NDOT says drivers gaining one travel lane
Posted at 11:00 PM, May 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-17 11:19:17-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — The new HOV lanes are just days away from going into effect through the resort corridor. Drivers may have already noticed the new striping along I-15. Starting Monday, those lanes will only be for carpoolers.

13 Action News took some of your last minute questions and concerns to NDOT.

"Most motorists think they're losing a lane, but they're actually gaining a lane on the 15," says Tony Illia with the Nevada Department of Transportation.

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The biggest concern for drivers seems to be that the new HOV lane through the resort corridor would take away a general travel lane, and increase drive times. Illia says drivers are actually gaining a lane, not losing one. Crews got rid of the two express lanes and created one additional travel lane, and one HOV lane to cut back on traffic.

"We're at 2.2 million residents, and we had 40 million visitors last year of which at least 60% drove here," says Illia.

The change is meant to encourage drivers to carpool.

13 Action News reporter Marissa Kynaston asked viewers on her social media pages if the new HOV lanes would encourage them to carpool. An overwhelming 75% of people who answered on Twitter said no, and 62% of people who answered on Facebook said no.

Nevada Highway Patrol is giving a 30 day grace period for drivers in the HOV lanes.