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2018 Mojave Desert Road Trip Part 6; The Labyrinth of Las Vegas Boulevard

Even though I had stopped in Las Vegas a couple times on my way to excursions in Arizona and Utah in the last couple years the last real time I was on Las Vegas Boulevard was back in 2012.  Suffice to say I found some substantial differences that I noticed even from the last time I visited.


Upon my arrival in Las Vegas I learned that a small segment of Las Vegas Boulevard at the intersection of Tropicana Avenue was still under state maintenance in conversation about the 500s series of highways in Clark County.  Said conversation on AAroads web forum can be found here:

What happened to the 500 series highway shields in Las Vegas?

Apparently NDOT still maintains the intersection of Las Vegas Boulevard and Tropicana Avenue due to upgrades being made on the pedestrian bridges.  Apparently the pedestrian bridges are being worked on presently to make them look like the newer structures further north on Las Vegas Boulevard.  Once the work is complete the bridges will be turned over to Clark County and likely the NDOT maintained road will follow some time after.

 
I seem to recall the Las Vegas Boulevard/Tropicana Avenue pedestrian bridges being present when I visited back in 2001 for New Years.  Pedestrian traffic at the time was largely unobstructed from accessing Las Vegas Boulevard via the sidewalk and cross walks.  I stayed at some ramshackle hotel west on Tropicana Boulevard over I-15 and recall using the bridges to enter some of the casinos.  The view from the pedestrian bridges is pretty nice on an early morning with little traffic about.











Pedestrian access to the actual surface of Las Vegas Boulevard today apparently requires walking a mile up and down the strip to find a crossing.  I might not be remembering things clearly but I want to say there wasn't obstructing barriers preventing access to the street and there was additional cross-walks that are no longer present.  I want to say that I actually at Harmon Avenue on a cross-walk back in 2001 and 2012 to reach Paris.  Most foot traffic today seems to be routed towards actually entering the casinos given that the staircases/escalators don't seem to have a ton of continuity to them. It was almost as though the entirety of Las Vegas Boulevard is now one giant structure designed to keep people on a direct path.








Apparently the only section of Las Vegas Boulevard aside from the Tropicana intersect under state maintenance still is from Carey Avenue north to I-15 which is signed as NV 604.  I did manage to capture a NV 604 shield heading south on I-15 from Zion National Park.  Either way today Las Vegas Boulevard is a far cry from what I remember just over a decade much less back to an era when it carried US 91/466.






Speaking of the 2001 New Years I do recall standing here with my family as the countdown to midnight was going on.





I also find it extremely odd that Las Vegas has an NHL team.  The city was overdue for a professional team but I never thought it would be hockey.  Kind of makes me wonder what a Red Wings ticket would go for if they were playing Golden Knights?




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