Phoenix

The five-mile extension will connect South Phoenix to the regional light rail system, operating from downtown Phoenix to Baseline Road.

Visit us at the South Central Extension Community Office

5040 S. Central Ave., Phoenix
Monday-Wednesday, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Thursday, Noon – 7 p.m. 
Friday, CLOSED 
First and Third Saturday, 9 a.m. – Noon 
By appointment, call (602) 687-8585

What is the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub?

The South Central Extension/Downtown Hub is more than just a train; it’s a way to bring new opportunities and connections to South Phoenix residents. It’s a catalyst for positive change.

The South Central Extension/Downtown Hub will connect with the current light rail system in downtown Phoenix and operate south to Baseline Road. The project also includes a hub in downtown Phoenix, new stations and public art.

Today, more than 50,000 riders rely on light rail each day. Light rail has proven to generate economic prosperity for historically underserved communities in metro Phoenix.

Light rail makes the unique offerings of South Phoenix more accessible to others, attracting new customers, businesses and jobs to the area. In 2016, the Phoenix City Council approved advancing the opening date of the extension from 2034 to 2023. The advancement is funded through Transportation 2050, a 35-year, multi-modal transportation plan approved by Phoenix voters, and is expected to open for operations in 2024.

Stats

Stats: 5.5 miles, 9 stations, 18 artists, 2 park-and-rides

Map

South Central Extension Downtown Hub map. Refer to Route description for details.

South Central Extension/Downtown Hub route description

The South Central Extension/Downtown Hub light rail project will begin at McKinley Street between 1st Avenue and Central Avenue creating a loop to the existing Valley Metro Rail. It will continue south on Central Avenue to Baseline Road.

In addition, the new light rail extension will add a Downtown Hub between Washington Street and Jefferson Street. There will be new stops added to create the hub on 3rd Avenue, which will connect to the future Capitol/I-10 West Light Rail Extension Project.

This extension will connect to places like:

  • St. Anthony’s Catholic Church
  • St. Vincent de Paul
  • Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center
  • Ed Pastor Transit Center
  • Travis L. Williams Family Services Center
  • St. Catherine of Sienna Catholic Church.

Schedule

Schedule 2012-2017: planning, 2017-2019: design, 2019-2024: construction, 2024: completion

Construction and COVID-19

As construction continues, the project team and construction crews are adhering to current guidelines about health and safety protocols.

“Stay at Home” policies have caused decreased activity in public places and on city streets, creating opportunities to look at ways to optimize construction work. While public health guidance limits the number of workers in a single crew, construction contractor Kiewit is deploying an additional construction crew on the project during this time of decreased public activity. Kiewit will continue to evaluate any additional opportunities to optimize work during this time, maintaining as a priority the health and safety of community members, the traveling public and construction workers.

As always, Valley Metro will notify stakeholders in advance of any additional construction near businesses or residences.

For more information:


New Construction App Available

Download the new Construct VM app to get the latest news and information about the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub project at your fingertips. Available now at the Apple App and Google Play stores. Find out more information about the app.

Construction site at Central Avenue and McKinley Street

Upcoming Construction Activities

Construction activity in the Downtown Hub area of the project is underway. Safety – for motorists, pedestrians, bicyclists, and construction workers – is a top priority. Please be extra careful when traveling in the construction zones.

  • Plan your trip. The Construction Notices area on this page provides the latest information on construction activity and traffic restrictions.
  • Remember to stay alert and follow the posted traffic signals and signs during construction.
  • For everyone’s safety, please do not approach workers in a construction zone. If you have questions regarding the project, contact a Community Outreach or Business Assistance Coordinator.

Please see the map below for upcoming construction activities.

South Central Extension/Downtown Hub upcoming construction activities map. Refer to Construction Look Ahead Schedule description below for details.

Construction Look Ahead Schedule

Between April 6, 2020 and June 30, 2020, the construction activities will be in the area between McKinley Street to Sherman Street and between 3rd Avenue to 5th Street. All notices are subject to change due to nature of work in different areas and/or unforeseen circumstances.

Central Avenue between Lincoln Street and Buchanan Street | January 26th - April 17th: Underground utility installation work between 7 p.m. and 6 a.m. weeknights. Traffic restrictions will remain 24/7 until work is complete.

1st Avenue between Lincoln Street and Jackson Street | February 10th – May 19th: Underground utility installation work between 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays and between 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. weeknights.

Washington Street between Central Avenue and 3rd Avenue | March 9th – June 30th: Underground utility installation work between 6 a.m. and 7 p.m. weekdays as well as 7 p.m. and 6 a.m. Friday and Saturday work scheduled as needed.

Madison Street between 1st and Central Avenue | March 23rd – April 8th: Addition of temporary driveway to access parking garage between 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. weekdays.

1st Avenue and Madison Street| March 30th – April 17th: Underground utility installation work between 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. weekdays.

3rd Avenue and Jefferson Street | April 8th – April 24th: Underground utility installations work between 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. weekdays. Saturday work will be scheduled as needed. Traffic restrictions will remain 24/7 until work is complete.

For more detailed information regarding upcoming construction activities, refer to the construction look ahead schedule and see Construction Notices to the right of the screen for specific construction notices.


Looking for More?

  • Business Assistance: Valley Metro and the City of Phoenix have developed extensive programs to provide business assistance before and throughout construction. See the Business Assistance tab for more details. 
  • Downtown Hub: This portion was added to the overall project in 2017 to allow regional rail operations and enable convenient transfers. See the Downtown Hub area track and station locations. 
  • Contacts: Community Outreach and Business Assistance staff are available to answer your questions. See the Contact tab for staff contact information.

Shop Local

Valley Metro is committed to the well-being of the communities we serve. We know that state and federal guidance seeking to limit the spread of COVID-19 may affect your shopping routines. Here are some tips for continuing to support local businesses during this time:

  • Order online or over the phone from local shops.
  • Order takeout or delivery for local restaurants.
  • If you typically make larger purchases with local retailers later in the year, place your orders now.
  • If you do not need anything specific now, buy gift cards from local businesses to use later.
  • Purchase gift cards from local restaurants.
  • Share this post and information widely so others know how to help!

We are stronger together

Valley Metro, in partnership with city of Phoenix, is committed to working closely with businesses along the alignment to develop business assistance programs that will give business owners and managers useful tools and information to use throughout construction of the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub.

Leveraging best practices from seven previous light rail extensions, Valley Metro and the city of Phoenix are developing a robust business assistance program for the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub – with the largest budget of any other prior rail project business assistance program. Valley Metro and construction contractor, Kiewit, have a “courteous” construction plan that entails maintaining business access at all times, safe routes for pedestrians and schools and localized hiring and spending.

Business access signage, special events, marketing/social media assistance, accounting/financial planning and access to business advisors and dedicated business assistance staff are just a few of the resources available through the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub business assistance program.


"The business assistance team has sponsored many events to highlight and promote local businesses. They have always responded quickly to questions, concerns and occasional disruptions."

Jose O'Rubio

Grullo's Restaurant | 1110 E. Main St. | Mesa, AZ 85203


"Long term construction always has its difficulties, but Valley Metro has gone above and beyond to promote area businesses. Their free advertising mailer and community events have been a great assist to my practice and has helped our business community develop helpful long-term relationships that will last long after the project is finished."

Richard S. Ray, DC

Ray Chiropractic Center | 62 N Stapley Dr | Mesa, AZ 85203

Engineers of the Future

Science students at a white board

Valley Metro, along with its partner firm PGH Wong Engineering, launched a STEM-focused program, Engineers of the Future, in seven local South Phoenix junior high and elementary schools. Engineers of the Future is a mentorship program for students in the seventh and eighth grades along the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub alignment. Engineers working on the light rail extension mentor students during the school year and provide support on student design projects. The program concludes at the end of each school year with an exciting science and engineering projects competition.

"Engineers of the Future has helped me understand math better and do better in my classes, too,” said Jasmine Romero, Engineers of the Future student from Cesar Chavez Community School.

"Don't doubt yourself and not apply because you think you won't make it and don't be afraid of meeting new people because you meet and learn a lot of things that you won't just find out on research and Googling." 2018 Student Intern


2019 South Central Extension/Downtown Hub Summer Internship Program

South Central Extension interns at board meeting.

In July 2019, 10 high school students will graduate from the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub Summer Internship program. The eight-week program provided opportunities for students to learn more about careers in planning, architecture and engineering. It also included a hands-on lab experience at South Mountain Community College. Twenty-nine applications were received in early April, more than twice the number from the 2018 Summer Internship program. Each will earn a $1,000 stipend for completing the program.


Workforce Development

Implemented through Kiewit, Valley Metro's construction contractor, a variety of education and employment programs help connect local residents and companies to construction business opportunities, increase the skills of current employees and communicate the benefits of construction careers. The program also includes craft and small business training designed to increase local construction capacity. Quarterly workshops offer opportunities to share lessons learned and build real connections with subcontractors.

Learn more about construction careers with Kiewit by emailing PHXLightRailJobs@kiewit.com.

Current Job Openings

Valley Metro has more than 300 employees and contractors working on the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub; and that number will grow into construction. To learn about available positions with Valley Metro or on the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub team, please email Flor Mason

Community Opportunities Video:

What is the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub?

The South Central Extension/Downtown Hub is more than just a train; it’s a way to bring new opportunities and connections to South Phoenix residents. It’s a catalyst for positive change.

The South Central Extension/Downtown Hub will connect with the current light rail system in downtown Phoenix and operate south to Baseline Road. The project also includes a hub in downtown Phoenix, new stations and public art.

Today, more than 50,000 riders rely on light rail each day. Light rail has proven to generate economic prosperity for historically underserved communities in metro Phoenix.

Light rail makes the unique offerings of South Phoenix more accessible to others, attracting new customers, businesses and jobs to the area. In 2016, the Phoenix City Council approved advancing the opening date of the extension from 2034 to 2023. The advancement is funded through Transportation 2050, a 35-year, multi-modal transportation plan approved by Phoenix voters, and is expected to open for operations in 2024.

Stats

Stats: 5.5 miles, 9 stations, 18 artists, 2 park-and-rides

Map

South Central Extension Downtown Hub map. Refer to Route description for details.

South Central Extension/Downtown Hub route description

The South Central Extension/Downtown Hub light rail project will begin at McKinley Street between 1st Avenue and Central Avenue creating a loop to the existing Valley Metro Rail. It will continue south on Central Avenue to Baseline Road.

In addition, the new light rail extension will add a Downtown Hub between Washington Street and Jefferson Street. There will be new stops added to create the hub on 3rd Avenue, which will connect to the future Capitol/I-10 West Light Rail Extension Project.

This extension will connect to places like:

  • St. Anthony’s Catholic Church
  • St. Vincent de Paul
  • Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center
  • Ed Pastor Transit Center
  • Travis L. Williams Family Services Center
  • St. Catherine of Sienna Catholic Church.

Schedule

Schedule 2012-2017: planning, 2017-2019: design, 2019-2024: construction, 2024: completion

Construction and COVID-19

As construction continues, the project team and construction crews are adhering to current guidelines about health and safety protocols.

“Stay at Home” policies have caused decreased activity in public places and on city streets, creating opportunities to look at ways to optimize construction work. While public health guidance limits the number of workers in a single crew, construction contractor Kiewit is deploying an additional construction crew on the project during this time of decreased public activity. Kiewit will continue to evaluate any additional opportunities to optimize work during this time, maintaining as a priority the health and safety of community members, the traveling public and construction workers.

As always, Valley Metro will notify stakeholders in advance of any additional construction near businesses or residences.

For more information:


New Construction App Available

Download the new Construct VM app to get the latest news and information about the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub project at your fingertips. Available now at the Apple App and Google Play stores. Find out more information about the app.

Construction site at Central Avenue and McKinley Street

Upcoming Construction Activities

Construction activity in the Downtown Hub area of the project is underway. Safety – for motorists, pedestrians, bicyclists, and construction workers – is a top priority. Please be extra careful when traveling in the construction zones.

  • Plan your trip. The Construction Notices area on this page provides the latest information on construction activity and traffic restrictions.
  • Remember to stay alert and follow the posted traffic signals and signs during construction.
  • For everyone’s safety, please do not approach workers in a construction zone. If you have questions regarding the project, contact a Community Outreach or Business Assistance Coordinator.

Please see the map below for upcoming construction activities.

South Central Extension/Downtown Hub upcoming construction activities map. Refer to Construction Look Ahead Schedule description below for details.

Construction Look Ahead Schedule

Between April 6, 2020 and June 30, 2020, the construction activities will be in the area between McKinley Street to Sherman Street and between 3rd Avenue to 5th Street. All notices are subject to change due to nature of work in different areas and/or unforeseen circumstances.

Central Avenue between Lincoln Street and Buchanan Street | January 26th - April 17th: Underground utility installation work between 7 p.m. and 6 a.m. weeknights. Traffic restrictions will remain 24/7 until work is complete.

1st Avenue between Lincoln Street and Jackson Street | February 10th – May 19th: Underground utility installation work between 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays and between 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. weeknights.

Washington Street between Central Avenue and 3rd Avenue | March 9th – June 30th: Underground utility installation work between 6 a.m. and 7 p.m. weekdays as well as 7 p.m. and 6 a.m. Friday and Saturday work scheduled as needed.

Madison Street between 1st and Central Avenue | March 23rd – April 8th: Addition of temporary driveway to access parking garage between 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. weekdays.

1st Avenue and Madison Street| March 30th – April 17th: Underground utility installation work between 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. weekdays.

3rd Avenue and Jefferson Street | April 8th – April 24th: Underground utility installations work between 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. weekdays. Saturday work will be scheduled as needed. Traffic restrictions will remain 24/7 until work is complete.

For more detailed information regarding upcoming construction activities, refer to the construction look ahead schedule and see Construction Notices to the right of the screen for specific construction notices.


Looking for More?

  • Business Assistance: Valley Metro and the City of Phoenix have developed extensive programs to provide business assistance before and throughout construction. See the Business Assistance tab for more details. 
  • Downtown Hub: This portion was added to the overall project in 2017 to allow regional rail operations and enable convenient transfers. See the Downtown Hub area track and station locations. 
  • Contacts: Community Outreach and Business Assistance staff are available to answer your questions. See the Contact tab for staff contact information.

Shop Local

Valley Metro is committed to the well-being of the communities we serve. We know that state and federal guidance seeking to limit the spread of COVID-19 may affect your shopping routines. Here are some tips for continuing to support local businesses during this time:

  • Order online or over the phone from local shops.
  • Order takeout or delivery for local restaurants.
  • If you typically make larger purchases with local retailers later in the year, place your orders now.
  • If you do not need anything specific now, buy gift cards from local businesses to use later.
  • Purchase gift cards from local restaurants.
  • Share this post and information widely so others know how to help!

We are stronger together

Valley Metro, in partnership with city of Phoenix, is committed to working closely with businesses along the alignment to develop business assistance programs that will give business owners and managers useful tools and information to use throughout construction of the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub.

Leveraging best practices from seven previous light rail extensions, Valley Metro and the city of Phoenix are developing a robust business assistance program for the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub – with the largest budget of any other prior rail project business assistance program. Valley Metro and construction contractor, Kiewit, have a “courteous” construction plan that entails maintaining business access at all times, safe routes for pedestrians and schools and localized hiring and spending.

Business access signage, special events, marketing/social media assistance, accounting/financial planning and access to business advisors and dedicated business assistance staff are just a few of the resources available through the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub business assistance program.


"The business assistance team has sponsored many events to highlight and promote local businesses. They have always responded quickly to questions, concerns and occasional disruptions."

Jose O'Rubio

Grullo's Restaurant | 1110 E. Main St. | Mesa, AZ 85203


"Long term construction always has its difficulties, but Valley Metro has gone above and beyond to promote area businesses. Their free advertising mailer and community events have been a great assist to my practice and has helped our business community develop helpful long-term relationships that will last long after the project is finished."

Richard S. Ray, DC

Ray Chiropractic Center | 62 N Stapley Dr | Mesa, AZ 85203

Engineers of the Future

Science students at a white board

Valley Metro, along with its partner firm PGH Wong Engineering, launched a STEM-focused program, Engineers of the Future, in seven local South Phoenix junior high and elementary schools. Engineers of the Future is a mentorship program for students in the seventh and eighth grades along the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub alignment. Engineers working on the light rail extension mentor students during the school year and provide support on student design projects. The program concludes at the end of each school year with an exciting science and engineering projects competition.

"Engineers of the Future has helped me understand math better and do better in my classes, too,” said Jasmine Romero, Engineers of the Future student from Cesar Chavez Community School.

"Don't doubt yourself and not apply because you think you won't make it and don't be afraid of meeting new people because you meet and learn a lot of things that you won't just find out on research and Googling." 2018 Student Intern


2019 South Central Extension/Downtown Hub Summer Internship Program

South Central Extension interns at board meeting.

In July 2019, 10 high school students will graduate from the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub Summer Internship program. The eight-week program provided opportunities for students to learn more about careers in planning, architecture and engineering. It also included a hands-on lab experience at South Mountain Community College. Twenty-nine applications were received in early April, more than twice the number from the 2018 Summer Internship program. Each will earn a $1,000 stipend for completing the program.


Workforce Development

Implemented through Kiewit, Valley Metro's construction contractor, a variety of education and employment programs help connect local residents and companies to construction business opportunities, increase the skills of current employees and communicate the benefits of construction careers. The program also includes craft and small business training designed to increase local construction capacity. Quarterly workshops offer opportunities to share lessons learned and build real connections with subcontractors.

Learn more about construction careers with Kiewit by emailing PHXLightRailJobs@kiewit.com.

Current Job Openings

Valley Metro has more than 300 employees and contractors working on the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub; and that number will grow into construction. To learn about available positions with Valley Metro or on the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub team, please email Flor Mason

Community Opportunities Video:

Project Contacts

Julie Cruz Gilfillan

Downtown - Lincoln Community Outreach Coordinator

(602) 495-8274

Julie Smith

Lincoln - Broadway Community Outreach Coordinator

(602) 744-5563

Khandle Hedrick

Broadway - Baseline Community Outreach Coordinator

(602) 523-6039

Victoria Bray

Downtown - I-17 Bridge Business Assistance Program Coordinator

(602) 495-8284

Flor D. Mason

I-17 Bridge - Baseline Business Assistance Program Coordinator

(602) 523-6032