Meeting opens the way to possible freeway alternative - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Localnews

default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
|
||
Logout|My Dashboard

Meeting opens the way to possible freeway alternative

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Tuesday, December 15, 2009 12:00 am

There may be a glimmer of hope to Councilman Sal DiCiccio’s attempts to find an alternative route for the South Mountain Loop 202 Freeway.

Last week officials from the Gila River Indian Community (GRIC), city of Phoenix, Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT), congressional offices and others met to discuss the possibility of a proposal that would put the South Mountain Loop 202 Freeway south of Pecos Road.

One participant, Eric Anderson from the Maricopa Association of Governments (MAG), called it a “good initial discussion.”

And in a letter sent to participants, Congressman Harry Mitchell said he was excited at the prospect of “substantial cost savings to taxpayers” if the freeway was diverted away from South Mountain.

Now, the ball is in the GRIC’s court.

“We need some guidance from the Gila River Indian Community on how to move forward,” Anderson said.

The problem is that twice the tribal council has passed resolutions opposing a freeway on tribal land, so it would be presumptive for ADOT to ask the tribe for permission to study alternatives.

“What part of no didn’t they understand,” was how one participant, who asked for anonymity, put it.

But after the Dec. 7 meeting, it appears that the tribe may be willing to entertain a proposal for an alternative route south of Pecos Road.

“It was encouraging on our part,” said Robbie Sherwood, Mitchell's district director in Arizona, although no details have been worked out and no agreement on any alternative has been reached.

“What we are waiting for is the tribal council to ask MAG and ADOT to come down and do a study,” Sherwood said.

There are no guarantees that anything will come from last week’s discussions, but the process will continue to move forward if the tribe writes to ADOT and gives permission for a study of possible routes. That could open the way for a formal proposal, which the tribe would probably put to a vote of its members.

Because no study of a route has been conducted on tribal land, it is unknown what the costs of an alternative would be. But one participant said that by not cutting through the ridges in South Mountain, as much as $250 million could be saved.

An alternative route could also add costs, especially if land swaps with the tribe involving federal land, or major changes to 51st Avenue that runs through a tribal community, are factored in.

But any net cost savings would be important because the cost of the Loop 202 has jumped from $1 billion to almost $2.4 billion. MAG, which has an estimated $6 billion shortfall in freeway construction funds, has recommended a scaled-down version of the freeway, from 10 lanes to eight lanes, to save money and bring the cost down to $1.9 billion.

Anderson said the possibility of an alternative to the old 1985 Pecos Road alignment won’t stop the current draft Environmental Impact Statement. But he did say that even if the EIS is approved and construction were to begin, changes could always be made if the Gila River Indian Community were to consider and approve a route that moves the freeway south.

He said that ADOT could even start construction in the west to give the tribe more time to consider an alternative route.

“This opens the door to looking at what a real alternative would cost and look like,” Sherwood said.

More about

More about

More about

  • Discuss

Telecommuting in Phoenix a growing trend, Valley ranks 7th in the nation for working from home

Work from home!  You've seen the ads on websites or the emails in your inbox.  Promises of a living wage while working out of the comfort of y…

Published: August 23, 2016 - 9:49 pm @ http://www.abc15.com/money/telecommuting-in-phoeni…

Fall Arizona Restaurant Week 2016 Promises Big Flavors

It’s back! Phoenicians rejoice! Fall Arizona Restaurant Week is almost here! Returning for its 9th season, Fall Arizona Restaurant Week will r…

Published: August 23, 2016 - 9:20 pm @ http://2geekswhoeat.com/fall-arizona-restaurant-we…

Sun Devil Stadium renovations are as good as advertised

TEMPE, Ariz. — You can pore over the facts and numbers until your brain goes numb. Until you’ve experienced the newly renovated portion of Sun…

Published: August 23, 2016 - 9:18 pm @ http://arizonasports.com/story/806304/sun-devil-st…

Don’t Let Sweaty People Take Everyone Else’s Air Conditioning

Like fireworks and barbeques, it has become a ritual of summer for modern lefties to issue hot takes against cool air. So, last week’s Washing…

Published: August 23, 2016 - 7:59 pm @ http://thefederalist.com/2016/08/23/dont-let-sweat…

Top 10: most amazing luxury hotels in the USA

Monday newsletters always feature top 10 travel lists to inspire. Today (July 4, 2016): top 10 best luxury hotels in the USA. The United State…

Published: August 23, 2016 - 7:56 pm @ https://theluxurytravelexpert.com/2016/07/04/top-1…

Leaked Doc: Soros Open Society Seeks to Reshape Census, Electoral Districts

The 2020 Census is critical in determining the gain or loss of districts and the reapportionment of the numbers of House seats allotted to eac…

Published: August 23, 2016 - 7:48 pm @ http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2016/08/22…

Valley photographer's car damaged, windows smashed by high school students

LAVEEN, AZ - An aspiring Valley photographer says he was targeted by a group of high school students who were up to no good on Friday night. D…

Published: August 23, 2016 - 7:18 pm @ http://www.abc15.com/news/region-west-valley/lavee…

Stiff competition for new marijuana licenses in Arizona

Marijuana as a business in Arizona will grow, especially if voters pass Prop 205 and make recreational marijuana legal this November for peopl…

Published: August 23, 2016 - 6:48 pm @ http://www.fox10phoenix.com/news/arizona-news/1952…

Mayor Stanton And Phoenix Community Leaders Go Door-To-Door To Help High School Dropouts

Published: Tuesday, August 23, 2016 - 3:03pmUpdated: Tuesday, August 23, 2016 - 4:34pm downloadPhoenix Mayor Greg Stanton Tuesday joined a gro…

Published: August 23, 2016 - 6:17 pm @ http://kjzz.org/content/354778/mayor-stanton-and-p…

Hundreds of applications pile in for Arizona medical marijuana dispensary licenses

PHOENIX, Az.– State officials say they received hundreds of applications for approximately 30 new licenses for medical marijuana dispensaries.

Published: August 23, 2016 - 5:46 pm @ http://www.thecannabist.co/2016/08/23/arizona-medi…

Facebook

ahwatukee.com on Facebook

Twitter

ahwatukee.com on Twitter

RSS

Subscribe to ahwatukee.com via RSS

RSS Feeds

Spacer4px

Most Popular

Online poll

Loading…