Providing Public Transportation
Alternatives for the Greater
Phoenix Metro Area

Transit-Oriented Development


Transit-oriented development (TOD) is
a pattern of development characterized by a mix of uses surrounding a transit station where streets have a high level of connectivity, blocks are small, and buildings and uses cater to the pedestrian.

The purpose is to make access to and from the transit station walk-able and accessible in an environment that is human-scaled and provide for a mix of compatible and complementary land uses which facilitate transit ridership.

The cities of Phoenix, Tempe and Mesa have taken action to encourage development near the existing 20-mile light rail alignment. There has been a substantial increase in development activity since 2004.


  • Walkable, tree-lined streets (shade)
  • Buildings built up to the street
  • Buildings with frequent windows and doors
  • Diverse, complementary uses that encourage people to stroll, shop, meet, greet and eat
  • A variety of compact housing in an assortment of styles
  • Strategic parking strategies (Reduced parking, shared parking, more land for development)


  • Revitalizes declining neighborhoods and urban centers
  • Improved accessibility to jobs
  • Generates sales tax revenues
  • Provides affordable housing near a readily available source of transportation, creating a high-level of mobility for households on limited incomes
  • Creates opportunities for public/private partnerships
  • Increases values of nearby properties
  • Improves foot traffic for retailers
  • Decreases transportation costs for residents and workers
  • Decreases employee travel costs
  • Allows access to a more diverse workforcee
  • Encourages transit use due to escalating gasoline and fuel costs

More information concerning TOD

Agency Role

Vision: Support its member cities in attaining their community and economic development goals and initiatives by serving primarily as a resource, a support function and community educator. By assisting in promoting high quality, more intensive development on and near properties adjacent to the light rail, Valley Metro can increase ridership and support long-term system capacity. Also, such development creates attractive investment opportunities for the private sector and stimulates additional development.

Mission: Assist Valley Metro Rail member cities in developing the policy framework and implementation strategies necessary to successfully build community support for TOD projects that: (1) improve access to public transportation, (2) make communities more pedestrian and bicycle friendly, (3) and create new living spaces that better serve the daily activities of the region by interfacing with a more diversified set of mobility options.

Goals and Objectives:
• Support community focused development
• Increase availability of public transportation
• Establish TOD principles in the planning and development process


Valley Metro
Amy Bratt
101 N. 1st Ave., Suite 1300
Phoenix, AZ 85003
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City of Phoenix
Curt Upton, Planner II
200 W. Washington Street, 3rd Floor, Phoenix, AZ 85003
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City of Tempe
Larry Schmalz, Redevelopment Manager
21 E. 6th St., Suite 208, Tempe, AZ 85281
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City of Mesa
Shea Joachim,
Economic Development Specialist
20 E. Main Street, Suite 200
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