The Ahwatukee Foothills Village Planning Committee is preparing to defend Ahwatukee residents’ quality of life during construction of the South Mountain Freeway, should it go down Pecos Road.

The committee has invited the Arizona Department of Transportation to provide an update of the project during the next Village Planning Committee meeting to be held in June.

The committee briefly discussed the freeway and the South Mountain Citizen’s Advisory Team during their meeting Monday, May 20. The committee is well represented on the SMCAT, with their own representative and at least two other members of the committee also on the SMCAT representing other groups.

Doug Cole, chairman of the Village Planning Committee said the committee has historically voted to oppose the Pecos alignment but the only thing that could change that alignment is the Gila River Indian Community voting again to allow the freeway on the reservation.

If ADOT does move forward with the Pecos Road alignment for the freeway, Cole said the Village Planning Committee will have to be prepared to fight to keep Ahwatukee’s daily operations moving smoothly.

“I see this committee as being intricately involved in mitigation, advising ADOT on how we can ensure there’s a viable route for people in Club West and at the end of the road to have a way to conduct their lives during the construction phase,” Cole said. “I can remember when traffic would be backed up on a weekday all the way back to 32nd Street on Chandler Boulevard. It would take 40 minutes just to get to the freeway. These are the issues that really scare me.”

Members of the committee were encouraged to review ADOT’s recently released Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS). Members of the public have until July 24 to submit comments on the DEIS.

The SMCAT will be meeting on June 11. During that meeting ADOT will be answering questions from SMCAT members about the DEIS.

The DEIS is available for review and comment at

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