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Sun, Sept. 22

Lake Mead Visitor Center to undergo accessibility improvements

Your fee dollars help fund a better experience at Boulder Beach Campground. (NPS photo by Andrew Cattoir)

Your fee dollars help fund a better experience at Boulder Beach Campground. (NPS photo by Andrew Cattoir)

BOULDER CITY, Nevada – The Lake Mead Visitor Center will receive more than $570,000 in renovations to improve overall accessibility for park visitors and staff. During construction, the visitor center will remain open.

Starting Oct. 29, the entry plaza, botanical gardens and nature walkways will be upgraded to comply with current accessibility standards. Grades and widths will be improved along the paths and entry plaza, providing more gradual slopes and wider paths for wheelchairs and strollers.

To provide more shade in the plaza, the existing robusta palms will be replaced with date palms, and new park benches will be added. The demonstration gardens will also undergo fresh landscaping with the support of the park’s Native Plant Nursery.

The outer nature walkways will be upgraded with a new stabilized crushed granite walking surface, similar to the surface at the Historic Railroad Trail. At various locations, additional seating will be provided, so visitors can relax and enjoy the surrounding nature and view of Lake Mead.

The irrigation system will be upgraded and modernized, and the drainage system will be expanded and improved.

The construction is expected to occur Mondays-Fridays through February. During this time, signs and fencing will provide visitors with detour information, so they can continue to stop into the visitor center to watch the film, explore the exhibits, plan their trip, visit with rangers and pick up a souvenir.

The contractor is Catworks Construction out of Vancouver, Washington. Funding for the project is provided by park entrance fees. To learn more about how fee dollars are used to improve visitor services, visit

Hurricane-force winds extended 35 miles (55 kilometers) from Willa’s center, and tropical storm-force winds were felt up to 115 miles (185 kilometers) out.

Forecasters said the hurricane could bring 6 to 12 inches (15 to 30 centimeters) of rain — with up to 18 inches (45 centimeters) in some places — to parts of Jalisco, Nayarit and Sinaloa states, with flash flooding and landslides possible in mountainous areas.

Farther to the south, the remnants of Tropical Storm Vicente continued to bring heavy rain that caused deadly flooding and mudslides. Federal disaster agency chief Luis Felipe Puente said 11 people died as a result of Vicente. Local officials earlier put the figure at 12.

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