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Goldfield travel center slated for spring opening

GOLDFIELD — Esmeralda County offered a sneak peek of Goldfield’s first travel/visitors center, a project that’s been more than 10 years in the making.

Though major construction is complete, crews still plan more work. That includes landscaping, outfitting the building’s interior and adding drinking fountains, including one for pets outdoors. A pet exercise area also is planned.

Before its the opening, officials also want to complete a construction “punch list”, to make sure everything officially is ready to go for the debut along the U.S. Highway 95 corridor.

An official opening is being projected for this coming spring, though efforts are underway to open parking and a restroom facility by this coming winter.

The visitors center is west of the central business district on the side of Goldfield toward the Tonopah region.

Officials want it to look good for those stopping by along with passing motorists.

“We’re going to do landscaping with natural stuff from around here,” Esmeralda County Public Works Director Mike Anderson said, adding that it could include Joshua trees and rocks, along with the possibility of locust trees.

“We want to keep it looking like Goldfield as much as possible,” Anderson said.

The project was a partnership with the Nevada Department of Transportation and Esmeralda County. With major construction complete, the county now owns the 1,200-square-foot single-story, wood-framed building, Anderson said.

“It’s made to look old, but it’s the newest,” Anderson said in describing “very good quality” construction materials, such as siding.

He anticipates the interior being outfitted in a way to showcase Goldfield’s rich history, helping attract visitors and giving motorists a chance for a break.

“It’s a traffic-safety thing, too,” Anderson said. “People can go around town or whatever, but they can take a break from driving so they don’t have an accident or rollover.”

The facility was built as a visitors/travel center in addition to serving as Goldfield’s first rest stop, complete with heating and air conditioning.

“For the traveling public, I think it will be a real good benefit,” Anderson said during a walk-through Oct. 26.

He envisions the building offering the potential to be a centerpiece for the town.

“It’s pretty nice,” he said of the site. “It used to be just one giant hole here. This whole area’s been filled in.”

Before winter, officials would like to open the new asphalt parking lot for use by motorists, including those with RVs.

“If there’s snow up on the (Goldfield) Summit, people sometimes they don’t want to go up there,” Anderson said. “They can park here.”

Goldfield Summit, along U.S. Highway 95, stands at 5,690 feet along U.S. Highway 95.

“We’ve had trucks back up all the way through town,” he recalled of prior winter storms affecting traffic.

The parking lot also features decorative lighting.

“It’s lit up pretty well at night,” Anderson said.

At a glance

■ The low bidder was Mesquite-based Trade West Construction Inc. with the project valued at more than $700,000.

■ G.C. Wallace Inc., of Las Vegas, also known as GCW, Inc., is the project’s lead designer.

Contact reporter David Jacobs at djacobs@tonopahtimes.com

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