Posted 8:10 AM 5/22/2012 : 5 largest construction traffic jams in Tucson
TUCSON - It seems you can't drive anywhere in town without running into some construction and you can expect to see $257 million worth in the coming months. Most of the five largest construction projects in Tucson are in bid right now and should begin this summer. They make the list for their sheer size and cost. At the top, is the Modern Streetcar Project.
The $196 million Modern Streetcar Project will connect the university to downtown and the west side, having a major impact on pedestrian, bicycle and business access.
"We live it every day. The impact immediately was 30% down and that was while school was still in session," says M. Two Feathers, Epic Café Owner.
The city is conscious of this and knows the best solution.
"Getting the project done as soon as possible to minimize that impact," says Jesse Gutierrez, streetcar construction manager.
"I actually don't mind traffic being blocked because i think more people should walk and ride their bikes," says pedestrian Zachary Johnson.
Final completion: July of 2013.
Fast forward to June now. The project at 22nd Street and Kino Boulevard will add bridges to the intersection at a cost of $20.6 million. Motorists on Kino will actually travel over 22nd.
Next is a $22 million project to widen Houghton Road to six lanes from Irvington, south to Valencia.
With a price tag of ten million dollars, a project on Oracle and Grant will get rid of left turns and instead, motorists will make what's called an indirect left, eliminating congestion and time needed for turn arrows.
"People will travel on Grant about an eighth of a mile east and west of the intersection and make a U-turn to be able to go north or south onto Oracle Road," says Mike Graham, City of Tucson PIO.
And last but not least, the $8.5 million project to widen the Houghton and Broadway intersection to go along with the Houghton widening project.
These projects are paid for with the Regional Transportation Authority half-cent sales tax approved by voters in 2006.
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