As an Ahwatukee resident not directly impacted by the plans for South Mountain Freeway, I probably shared some complacency about the new road being a “done deal.” My family live far enough away from Pecos Road that we won’t really notice the noise, dust and general disruption of the construction or, eventually, the traffic using the new road.
The deadline for public comments on the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the South Mountain Freeway is 11 days away and Ahwatukee’s outspoken opposition to the freeway is working feverishly to get in their response.
Now that they have released the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for the South Mountain Freeway (SMF), ADOT has become very cocky about telling Ahwatukee residents that the SMF is a “done deal.” This is a dark strategy to try to get residents just to give up and let it happen.
A brief look at a map of the greater Phoenix area would indicate the blatant lack of any freeway system serving the southwest quadrant of the area. The Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) plan since 1985 has been to develop this system with a bypass connecting Interstate 10 west at 59th Avenue (current preferred option) to I-10 east at Pecos Road.
The Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) needs to undertake a massive change to its Right of Way Group. I sent my first letter on Sept. 2 to Gov. Jan Brewer and it outlined the current and embedded issues — complete with hard data, some from eight years ago.
While the summer heat is on in the Valley of the Sun, PARC (Protecting Arizona’s Resources and Children) remains on “Active Duty” and is maintaining its watch over the proposed Loop 202 project, preparing for the release of the FEIS (Final Environmental Impact Statement) due later this year.
Would you pay $7 for a gallon of regular gas in the Ahwatukee Foothills area? The answer is a solid NO — not when it can be bought at most filling stations for around $3.50 a gallon — no one would pay double for the same product.
Like the old saying goes, “timing is everything,” and unfortunately here is a vivid example that impacts all of us who live in Arizona. This deals with ADOT and their lack of stewardship on the monies earmarked for the proposed SMF on Pecos Road.
One of the least publicized, but most significant results so far for the South Mountain Freeway (SMF) project is the final results of the SMCAT, or SMF Citizens Advisory Team. This team, picked by the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT), is a diverse group of organizations affected by the project and is intended to provide extensive public involvement and ongoing opportunities for community members to express opinions and concerns, a key component of the study process.
Ahwatukee is a great community. We have special days for supporting our businesses. Now it is time for our businesses to support our community. They either support Ahwatukee or they don’t! Those who support Ahwatukee need to “put their money where their mouth is.” All others are supporting the greed of the transportation industry.
The Ahwatukee-based group fighting against the South Mountain Loop 202 Freeway is not settling down now that the comment period is over on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for the freeway. They’re gearing up with more events and informational meetings hoping to bring more awareness to people in Ahwatukee to the problems the freeway presents.
For years, the Maricopa Association of Governments (MAG) and the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) have been spouting a story of how the South Mountain Freeway (SMF) will save our Valley from traffic congestion and air pollution. Now that experts have weighed in, it is clear that these claims are untrue and that this freeway proposal is a major fraud perpetrated by MAG and spread by ADOT in the form of its recent Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS).
While a few Ahwatukee residents have strong opinions about the South Mountain Freeway (SMF) Loop 202, one way or the other, a majority are totally ambivalent about the road. Like most Valley residents, they are hoping for anything at all that will ease their commute by reducing stop-and-go congestion on the Interstate 10. Most of us have been paying an increased sales tax for transportation projects since 1985 and any tangible evidence of our money at work is gratifying. Since very little of Ahwatukee is south of Chandler Boulevard, the impact on most of us will be marginal.
Allison Hurtado’s article, “Freeways have economic benefits” (AFN, June 25), demonstrates the myopic view proponents have of the proposed South Mountain Loop 202. For proponents, there are only benefits to consider, never costs. While there may be benefits attributable to this proposed project, there certainly are costs, and it is these costs that must be carefully considered in the process of deciding should the freeway be built or not.
Active members of Protecting Arizona’s Resources and Children (PARC) in our Village of Ahwatukee and outlying residential areas aim to stop the South Mountain Freeway from being built on Pecos Road. Preventing the destruction of our community and South Mountain is the main goal of PARC, a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization.
The Maricopa Association of Governments (MAG) and the Arizona
Department of Transportation (ADOT) would have us believe that the
Pecos alignment is the only alternative for the South Mountain
Freeway (SMF). In our view, the Pecos alignment is not and has
never been a viable alternative. Yet viable alternatives existed
when MAG first proposed the SMF 25 years ago, and they still exist
The Phoenix District 6 council run-off election is Nov. 3
between incumbent Sal DiCiccio and Dana Marie Kennedy. This is a
clear choice between tawdry more of the same city governing or
refreshing thoughtful change.
While Chad Blostone did a nice job of staying with a more
fact-based discussion on the South Mountain Freeway (SMF) in his
June 17 column, "Loop 202 may be a good idea, but not for the
reasons stated," his discussion on traffic congestion is too
simplified, as he only considers Interstate 10 between Pecos and
Baseline roads. A better understanding on this issue may lead
readers to a different conclusion on the need for the SMF.