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colin

ADOT Public Meetings on Mass Transit

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ADOT to Hold Public Meetings on Transporation Options

Tucson will be this Thursday at the Copper Room at the Randolph Golf Club at Reid Park (on Alvernon between 22nd and Broadway).

Phoenix will be next Tuesday at the Central Library at 1221 N Central.

Topics will range from light rail, commuter rail and other mass transit options.

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weird - i saw an article in the tucson citizen the other day on a proposal to route a northern I-10 bypass somewhere through the dudleyville / winkleman area (i forget the exact route). is this an idea that rears its head every few years, or is it new?

i'd rather see no new interstates near tucson, even if the alternative is to widen I-10 through here to 30 lanes. the thought of an interstate through that pretty area north of here pisses me off, a little.

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eh I agree they destroy alot of things. But smooth flowing transit, is a gigantic ingredient to growth and economic vitality. Niether of which are things that Tucsonans favor. So you'd probabally be on the winning team as the preservationists come out of the woodwork. But don't worry, for every freeway that doesn't get built in Tucson, we'll have two in Phoenix.

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The hope is, like any public meeting, to make it seem like they got some of their ideas from the public and involved in the process, when they already have everything ironed out. But this one specifically has to do with the governor telling them they had to have public meetings.

I don't if the bypass comes up much, but I imagine it has before since it seems like a logical choice (although, not a good one IMHO).

The route ADOT has runs north from Benson along Cascabel Road along the San Pedro to the Highway 76 near San Manuel. Not sure where it was to go from there, but it has to either wind up toward Winkelman or cut directly west across the desert. I think the intention was to link it to I-8 directly, or at least get it as close as possible to I-8 so that trucks could also use the Phoenix bypass.

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eh I agree they destroy alot of things. But smooth flowing transit, is a gigantic ingredient to growth and economic vitality. Niether of which are things that Tucsonans favor. So you'd probabally be on the winning team as the preservationists come out of the woodwork. But don't worry, for every freeway that doesn't get built in Tucson, we'll have two in Phoenix.

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Agreed!

A lot of people here feel the same way, actually. When they tried to include that southern freeway bypass generally along Sahuarita Road into the long-range transportation plan, people flipped out. Sahuaritans packed the public meetings and it was cut within about 2 months. And that's across flat, open desert that will be developed someday regardless.

If that bypass got to the public meeting point, you'd see a much more negative reaction because of the environmental sensitivity, threat of lifestyle changes in Cascabel and Redington, and also the Abbey re-incarnates in Oracle. People in Tucson would also have none of it.

I thought there was also a bypass proposal at some point along Sandario west of the mountains, which would actually put it through the Tohono O'Odham Nation and Saguaro National Park. Maybe it was just a rumor, since that one has a snowball's chance in hell.

I don't think we'll ever see another freeway in Tucson. Even the Aviation extension has been demoted to an "urban boulevard" and it's still on shaky ground because it actually results in buildings being demolished.

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I thought there was also a bypass proposal at some point along Sandario west of the mountains, which would actually put it through the Tohono O'Odham Nation and Saguaro National Park.

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That bypass was originally proposed to go from 10 south of TUS to 10 west of PHX right ? Or would it have ended at 8?

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No. The most recent ADOT proposal had it going east of Tucson on the other side of the mountains, then shoot west to near I-8. Keeping trucks away from Phoenix seems to be a higher priority for ADOT, and I agree with them. I think 85 is supposed to be completely upgraded to 4-lane with median within the next couple of years.

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that'd work pretty well I think. One thing that scares me is how fast trucks drive in AZ, I was driving 75 the other night and a truck flew by me. Scared the crap out of me, seems so dangerous do drive something that big, that fast. In MI trucks could not go more than 55

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Yeah, but Michigan doesn't have miles of open emptiness where the threat of urban traffic or even cars merging from exits is only a distant memory. You have to remember that that 75 in AZ and NM is for all vehicles, although I've noticed that trucks tend to go a little slower, especially at night.

That's why we have higher general speed limits here in the first place. They could never pull that off in most other states, including much of California.

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i'm with you on this one, mj, at least where truck traffic in the phoenix area is concerned. i have a lot of close calls when i drive the interstates in phoenix, and most of the time a truck is involved. they don't seem to slow down once they get into the metro. scary. seeing the smoke from an 18-wheeler's brakes in your rear-view - because he whipped his truck into a notch behind you, only to realize you were already having to brake - is not cool. for some reason my near-misses only seem to happen in phoenix, and only on freeways. street traffic in phoenix was so pleasant the last time i was there i found myself seeing how i could live downtown - if i never had to leave downtown.

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eh Phoenix's traffic is not that bad. After Growing up in Detroit, and Chicago I can drive anywhere. I do think that they should have a slower truck speed posted thru the Valley. Those guys scare the crap out of me. It makes sense when you're in the vast nothingness to go a little faster though.

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eh Phoenix's traffic is not that bad. After Growing up in Detroit, and Chicago I can drive anywhere. I do think that they should have a slower truck speed posted thru the Valley. Those guys scare the crap out of me. It makes sense when you're in the vast nothingness to go a little faster though.

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Love at Atlanta, and one thing I have to say is true of Atlantians, they all beotch and moan about the Atlanta traffic as if it's the only city on earth who has traffic.

front page news for the AJC: "it's not"

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Love at Atlanta, and one thing I have to say is true of Atlantians, they all beotch and moan about the Atlanta traffic as if it's the only city on earth who has traffic.

front page news for the AJC: "it's not"

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getting off topic, but i have always found phoenix's traffic (and NYC's and houston's) to be hairier to drive in than atlanta's. LA, SF, miami and even san diego, though, haven't been as bad to me as ATL. never driven in detroit or chicago. it's all just personal experience, i guess.

and as bad (or, depending on your perspective, not bad) as atlanta's traffic is, the in-town 75/85 corridor and the 285 loop would definitely be worse if there were no MARTA. phoenix needs something similar. might even get a chance to outdo MARTA on usability and putting routes where they're needed.

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So I did end up going. Free cookies and Pepsi (YUM!).

It was mostly older folks and crackpots who just sort of wandered in, but there were some really good comments. A few notes:

  • Everyone there seemed most concerned with some sort of inter-urban rail line between the two metros. High-speed rail was mentioned by the ADOT guy, but no specifics were discussed.

  • How to pay for it was what ADOT wanted to hear about. Their rep (I forget his name, but he's the director of their public transportation division) specifically mentioned rental car and resort fees, both of which I'm strongly opposed to.

  • On that vein, several people talked about increasing the gas tax and re-writing the laws so that those taxes can be used for public transit funding ( :thumbsup: ).

  • Increasing frequency of current bus service and generally meeting current demand was a topic.

I wrote in on my comment form also regarding improving express bus services and getting light rail into Tucson on a shorter timetable.

One thing I didn't like about this is that they passed out RTA brochures even though the RTA stuff really doesn't have anything to do with this since it's already been approved. It caused a little bit of confusion.

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RTA? Regional transit authority?

I didn't know you drank pepsi colin, I thought you ate tofu, and drake carrot juice

Kidding, Kidding :)

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are there already lodging taxes earmarked for transportation in AZ? the same for rental car fees? i would expect that AZ gets a lot of revenue from lodging, but what it does with the money i don't know. why are you opposed to these? are they anti-tourist? are these sources already being overtapped? a preference for using private transportation (i.e., drivers) as a source of revenue?

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I'm not sure what the resort fee is used for. I'm opposed to that one because I think that the resorts already have to work hard enough to compete with Phoenix and adding an additional fee on would give people more reason to dislike our often inferior resorts.

The rental car fee at the airport is used mainly for that damned stadium (TEP) which is still losing money and will be losing the White Sox within the next few years, rendering it all the more useless.

Either way, my main basis for opposition is: what do either of those have to do with public transit? Particularly rental cars. If someone rents a car, why would they use public transit? And, typically, these are people are going to rent a car regardless, whereas with other things, like the gas tax, your mainly pushing on people who driving 30-40 miles in every day, and those are the best candidates for the park & ride, vanpool and express bus programs.

I'm not really good at figuring out numbers and funding sources and such though, so maybe my opinions should be discounted on this.

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What is the TIME Coalition? The editorial says "a statewide group that's pushing for a more comprehensive transportation plan," but are they state funded? Construction industry funded? Christian Scientist funded?

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