This just in from our friends at “Friends of Transit.”
For our Friends in the West Valley, and all those interested in light rail expansion, we wanted to pass along notice of an Avondale City Council Special Meeting:
Avondale City Council
Monday, May 4, 2009
City Council Chambers
11465 W. Civic Center Drive
Avondale, AZ 85323
The Council will be hearing a status presentation from METRO on the extension of light rail into the Valley. The agenda item is for information and discussion only.
View the complete agenda and City Council Report online at: http://www.avondale.org/Archive?ADID=2525.
City Council Report
TO: Mayor and Council
FROM: Rogene Hill, Assistant City Manager
THROUGH: Charlie McClendon, City Manager
Mr. Wulf Grote, Director of Project Development for Valley Metro Rail (METRO) will provide a status presentation on the extension of light rail into the West Valley.
Valley Metro Rail was formed in October 2002 with the purpose of planning, designing, and operating a light rail system. Members of Valley Metro Rail include: Phoenix, Tempe, Mesa, Glendale, Chandler, Peoria, and Scottsdale. Membership is open to other cities at the cost of $50,000 per year. Funds were budgeted for membership, but were removed due to the economic downturn and the failure of Prop 407 in 2008.
In addition to the current 20-mile line, the Maricopa Association of Governments has identified six high-capacity transit corridors totaling an additional 37 miles in the Regional Transportation Plan. METRO is responsible for determining the specific route for each corridor, and to examine whether light rail, bus rapid transit, local bus service or some other transit mode is best to serve these corridors. All of the high-capacity transit corridors in the plan are scheduled to be in place by 2025 and include the following:
- Northwest Extension: Five miles, runs north on 19th Avenue toward Rose Mofford Park. This light rail extension will be built in two phases, with the first phase of 3.2 miles terminating at Dunlap Avenue. Opens in 2012. Funded through City of Phoenix Transit 2000 tax.
- Tempe South: Two miles, runs southbound to near Southern Avenue in Tempe. Opens in 2015. Transit mode and route to be determined.
- Central Mesa: Runs 2.7 miles eastward to the downtown area. Opens 2015. Transit mode and route to be determined.
- Glendale: Alignment and transit mode to be determined. Opens 2017. Funded through Glendale and Phoenix city taxes.
- I-10 West: Eleven miles, runs near the freeway ending at 79th Ave. Opens 2019. Transit mode and route to be determined.
- Northeast Phoenix: Twelve miles, runs northeast toward Paradise Valley Mall. Opens 2025. Transit mode and route to be determined
The METRO I-10 high capacity transit study is ongoing. METRO is currently in the Tier 2 analysis phase which includes a detailed analysis of all the alternative alignments. At the completion of the Tier 2 analysis a "Locally Preferred Alternative" will be indentified and include a recommended alignment, type of transit technology and station locations.
The alignment of the METRO I-10 West corridor will be an important development for the West Valley and may impact other transportation options and decisions for Avondale. Whether the terminus is at 79th Ave or at SR 101, how Avondale provides connections with the light rail and Park and Ride facilities will need to be factored into future infrastructure planning.
As discussions continue about future expansions of light rail in the West Valley, it is important to understand how this process functions and what actions the City might take now to prepare for the future. Mr. Grote will conclude his presentation by discussing the steps a City can take to leverage their voice as these decisions are made.
For information and discussion purposes only.