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Tue, Jul 28, 2015

Everybody Benefits from Public Transportation

PHOENIX, AZ – From restaurants to residential development, more than $8.2 billion in private and public capital investment has been built near the initial 20-miles of light rail that extends from Phoenix and Tempe into Mesa. See details in Valley Metro Rail—Economic Growth Along the Line. Another $346 million in commercial and residential building is being planned, most of that from private developers.

“Big things are happening in Phoenix because of light rail, and big things are going to continue to happen,” said Mayor Greg Stanton. “Light rail has been transformative for our downtown and our economy.  With it we’ve linked jobs, education, arts and culture in a way that would not have been possible otherwise.”

Phoenix and Tempe mayors made announcement today at Phoenix’s DeSoto Central Market, an adaptive re-use bar, market and food court that intentionally chose their site due to proximity near the Roosevelt/Central Avenue light rail station.

“Investment in transit does more than improve neighborhoods; it improves lives,” said Tempe Mayor Mark Mitchell. “More than $3.4 billion has been invested in Tempe around light rail since construction began in 2005. Everyone benefits from public transportation.” Mitchell is also vice chair of the Valley Metro Rail Board of Directors.

Economic Development along 20-Mile Light Rail
Number of Projects:  204
Capital Investment – Private:  $5,989,639,864
Capital Investment – Public:  $2,241,737,632
Total Investment:  $8,231,377,496
SF Commercial/Office: 10,327,168
SF Public:  938,737
SF Education:  4,698,902
SF Residential:  5,666,863
# Residential Units:  15,328
# Affordable Units: 1,300
# Hotel Rooms:  2,948

TOD event
Photo from left to right: Phoenix Public Transit Director Maria Hyatt, DeSoto Market owner Shawn Connelly, Phoenix Vice Mayor Daniel Valenzuela, Phoenix Community and Economic Development Director Christine Mackay, Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton, Phoenix Councilmember Kate Gallego, Glendale Councilmember and Valley Metro RPTA Vice Chair Gary Sherwood, Tempe Mayor and Valley Metro Vice Chair Mark Mitchell and Valley Metro CEO Steve Banta.

Economic development within one-half mile of the system has been stimulated by ridership that has exceeded original projections. Valley Metro began compiling development activity since construction started in 2005 as part of an economic development database. The original $7 billion investment had included projects that were proposed. The updated $8.2 billion includes projects completed or under construction. With the 3.1-mile Central Mesa Extension set to open in less than four weeks, there is an added $90 million in private and public development that occurred since construction began in June 2012. Click here for a link to the Valley Metro Rail Economic Development brochure.

About Valley Metro: Valley Metro provides eco-friendly public transit options to residents of greater Phoenix and Maricopa County including the planning and operations of a regional bus system and the development and operations of light rail. In Fiscal Year 2014, total ridership for the system was 72 million passengers. The first 20 miles of light rail opened December 2008. Seven light rail extensions are planned or are under construction that will create a 66-mile system by 2034. Valley Metro also offers transit options including alternative transportation programs for seniors and people with disabilities, commuter vanpools, online carpool matching, bus trip mapping, bicycle safety and telework assistance. Two Boards of Directors set the policy direction for the agency with the intent of advancing the regional public transit system. Get the latest news by following us on Facebook and Twitter or visiting           

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