By Amanda Ketchledge, KTVN Channel 2
South Lake Tahoe is hoping to create a more successful mountain resort community with the Highway 50 Revitalization Project.
At a community meeting Wednesday night, the Tahoe Transportation District answered questions about possible construction being considered to make downtown more pedestrian friendly.
Residents and business owners weren't allowed to comment, but they were allowed to submit their questions to get answered about this project and how it will impact the environment and the economy.
Funding for the $75 million project was just one of the questions raised by community members.
Jenna Palacio, a South Lake Tahoe resident said, "I like the project but i have concerns about low income housing, things like addressing our public transportation system and really this outdoor recreation town that we're striving to become."
Tahoe is hoping to approve one of four development options, with the goal of creating a Main Street in South Shore.
"Those five lanes that go through the core right now would actually be able to be narrowed up, bring the sidewalks out, make it a whole lot more pedestrian orientated," said Carl Hasty, the District Manager of Tahoe Transportation District.
A possible roundabout at the intersection of Highway 50 and Lake Parkway is just one option considered for more mountain and lake access. But Carl Hasty, the District Manager for the Transportation District says the potential reroute could displace residents in outdated homes.
"The project is going to require right away acquisition on the California side, which means a lot of old housing that's there would have to be acquired. We would be responsible for replacing much of that, as well as relocating residents in there," said Hasty.
Hasty says new workforce, senior and commercial space would be added. But one resident likes the concept of changing the roads for more safety.
"I'm looking for this project to relieve all the traffic off the residential streets," said Steve Tancredy, a South Lake Tahoe resident.
Business leaders also say the project will bring more visitors and residents if the area is changed.
B Gorman, the President and CEO of Tahoe Chamber said, "Creating a pedestrian friendly area, facilitates people getting out of their cars, walking around, actually going into shops, instead of just driving by them."
Project developers hope to prepare an environmental impact study for the public to look over this spring. Then a construction plan will be subject to approval in late summer.
More Information on Project: http://www.tahoetransportation.org/us50