Smaller freeway means fewer homes demolished - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Topstory

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

Smaller freeway means fewer homes demolished

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Friday, April 2, 2010 11:00 pm

For Ahwatukee Foothills, scaling back the proposed South Mountain Loop 202 from 10 lanes to eight means an estimated 167 homes will remain standing.

But the almost $2 billion project will still take out 120 homes and one church.

And while the Arizona Department of Transportation is rapidly moving forward with a draft environmental impact report, questions remain about how the construction would impact the area.

“What’s going to happen to the entrance to the Foothills Preserve and Calabrea?” asked Jim Wesley, who represents the Foothills Reserve HOA on ADOT’s South Mountain Citizen Advisory Team.

“Our thought is that the city of Phoenix would come in and build Chandler Boulevard,” said Ben Spargo, one of the engineers working on the project.

But with the city coffers empty, and state funding also in the red, Wesley wasn’t convinced that anyone has the money to build Chandler Boulevard in the near future.

“The whole access to our community will change, but nobody has a preliminary plan,” to handle it, he said after the advisory team meeting Monday night.

The narrower footprint for the freeway prompted Mike Hinz from Club West and other advisory team members to ask if instead of being built at or above ground level, the freeway could be depressed, like most other Valley freeways.

But Spargo said that would mean more homes demolished to build additional water retention areas, plus the added cost of pumps to move water out of a low-lying freeway.

Saving money and speeding up the process are two major goals for ADOT.

The cost of the freeway had ballooned from around $1 billion to more than $2.5 billion, while sales tax revenues plummeted, creating a $6 billion gap.

By scaling back the scope of the project and slightly changing the route in the west, ADOT has cut the estimated cost to $1.9 billion.

The project was first proposed in 1985 to connect Interstate 10 in Ahwatukee Foothills, travel west, cut through a corner of South Mountain Park and several ridges in South Mountain, then north to reconnect with I-10, now around 59th Avenue.

After sitting dormant for years, the current planning process resumed in 2002.

“The time for talk is just about over. We’ve got to move on this,” said Tim Tait, a spokesman for ADOT.

He told the advisory team that the draft environmental impact statement might be made public in early 2011.

While ADOT is moving forward with Pecos Road as the preferred route for the eastern segment of the freeway, it is also meeting with the Gila River Indian Community to examine possible alternative routes south of Pecos Road the wouldn’t cut through South Mountain, which the tribe considers sacred.

“The tribal council has twice voted against a freeway and (no build) is their position,” Tait said.

But while the tribe doesn’t want South Mountain altered to make room for the freeway, its members also understand it will probably be built, so Tait read a carefully worded message, indicating that engineers and the tribe have been meeting to examine possible alternative routes, south of Pecos.

Tait also stressed that while planning is moving forward with Pecos Road as the preferred route, a last-minute offer by the Gila River Indian Community would still be considered.

“We have a lot of process ahead of us. Should an alternative be advanced, even late in the process, it will be studied,” Tait said.

First designed three decades ago, the freeway was included in the Valley’s transportation plan but sat on hold when funding dried up in the early 1990s. Now it is considered a priority, despite funding shortfalls that have put other freeways on hold.

Fore more information, or to see aerial maps of where the freeway will go, visit www.SouthMountainFreeway.com.

 

Related stories

More about

More about

More about

  • Discuss

Bundy Militia Bro Charged With Trying to Detonate a Bomb at a Government Facility in Arizona

Yet another member of the Bundy militia is in trouble with the law. Yet another member of the Bundy militia is in trouble with the law again. …

Published: June 26, 2016 - 9:24 am @ http://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/bundy-mi…

5 Jarringly Idiotic Right-Wing Moments This Week: Not Just About the Brexit

Trump spews nonsense while O'Reilly makes perfect sense as the embodiment of white supremacy. Immediately after his conspiracy theory- and lie…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 9:23 am @ http://www.alternet.org/right-wing/5-jarringly-idi…

The Brexit Vote made this 'Yes Minister' video go viral

Driving in Canada Canada - a home away from home Canada, it's time to change! Living with a disability in Indo-Canadian society The empire str…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 8:54 am @ http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/uk/The-Br…

How Trump accidentally exposed the longtime NRA fantasy of 'a good guy with a gun'

Occasionally when Donald Trump misspeaks, he accidentally points the way to a larger truth; a kind of Kinsley gaffe born less of momentary con…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 8:53 am @ http://www.businessinsider.com/trumps-gun-gaffe-2016-6

Live. Work. Play: Dave’s Diabetes Story

Working for the American Diabetes Association® means making a difference for millions of people and working toward a future free of diabetes a…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 8:36 am @ http://diabetesstopshere.org/2016/06/24/daves-diab…

Shots fired in Phoenix neighborhood during drive-by

Shots were fired in a downtown Phoenix neighborhood early Sunday morning near 15th Avenue and Interstate 17.  Police say this was a drive-by. …

Published: June 26, 2016 - 8:36 am @ http://www.abc15.com/news/region-phoenix-metro/cen…

Hank Paulson Endorses Hillary for Globalist Platform

Paulson also posits that Clinton would be more likely to cut Americans’ medicare and social security, which Paulson cites as a top priority fo…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 8:22 am @ http://www.breitbart.com/2016-presidential-race/20…

Arizona Says It Is Unable To Carry Out Executions Due To Lack Of Drugs

By Ian Simpson June 24 (Reuters) - Arizona has run out of execution drugs, including a sedative implicated in botched lethal injections, accor…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 8:06 am @ http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/arizona-execut…

The lonely lives of Latinos for Trump

MIAMI – Lifelong friends unfriend them on Facebook. Siblings and parents refuse to talk politics. Their kids are home from college stoked abou…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 8:02 am @ http://www.politico.com/story/2016/06/donald-trump…

Syria's civil war: 'Dozens killed' in Deir Az Zor raids

Fighting began in 2011 after government crackdown on protesters Over 250,000 Syrians killed and even larger number wounded so far Almost 11 mi…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 7:35 am @ http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2016/06/syria-civil-…

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…