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Proposed Glendale Light Rail Extension

Construction on a new segment of the Valley Metro light rail continues along 19th Avenue in Phoenix July 22. As the light rail continues to expand, some West Valley leaders are calling for an extension into Glendale. Photo credit: Nick Cote/Daily News-Sun

By Jeff Grant for Daily News-Sun

Valley Metro and Glendale officials continue to hear pros and cons from the public on a possible extension of light rail service into the downtown area.

During a meeting with constituents Aug. 27 at Ironwood High School, Sahuaro District City Councilman Gary Sherwood said the regional public transit agency and city leaders continue to weigh the idea, seen by proponents as a means of expanding mobility throughout the Valley while spurring economic development.

Extending the system into downtown Glendale would impact traffic, but it also is seen as a way to inject new life into the shops and businesses, including a number of antiques stores, that call the area home.

Valley Metro Community Outreach Coordinator Megan Casey noted the transit agency is continuing to weigh both light rail and bus rapid transit as modes for expanding the system into and out of Glendale.

In addition to ridership projections, the agency and city officials are looking at how much right-of-way is needed, impact on traffic and detailed cost estimates.

For a possible light-rail extension, Valley Metro is examining three possible links to the existing extension along 19th Avenue in Phoenix:

  • along Glendale Avenue straight into the downtown Glendale area
  • along Camelback Road until 43rd Avenue, then heading north to Glendale Avenue and into downtown; or
  • along Camelback Road to Grand Avenue, then northwest to 51st Avenue, where the route would head straight north into downtown Glendale.

Construction would not begin until 2023, with the extension becoming operational in 2026. The time between 2016 and 2023 would be spent in project development and design.

Read more at Your West Valley

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