A technical task force of the Regional Transportation Authority today recommended that two projects from the 2006-voter approved RTA plan be moved into the next RTA plan for future consideration due to significant project scope changes proposed by jurisdictions that would build the projects.
The two projects include:
- 1st Avenue, Orange Grove Road to Ina Road (RTA Ballot #13) (Pima County)
- 1st Avenue, Grant Road to River Road (RTA Ballot #14) (City of Tucson)
The county had proposed eliminating the 1st Avenue widening project, from Orange Grove to Ina Road. It has since revised the proposal to eliminate a travel lane addition only.
The City of Tucson had proposed to eliminate an additional two travel lanes to widen the road to six lanes from Grant Road to River Road.
Task force members, consisting of technical experts, who also serve on the RTA Technical Management Committee expressed that the changes are justifiable from a technical perspective but that the changes significantly deviate from what was presented to the Pima County voters in 2006 when they approved the 20-year regional transportation plan and countywide RTA half-cent sales tax.
“The task force recommended that these changes be referred back to the voters as part of the RTA Next plan, which is under development, so that the voters have a say in the matter,” said Curtis Lueck, co-chair of the task force. “We want to honor and respect their 2006 choice and to let them tell the RTA if we are headed in the right direction with these changes.”
The RTA has a citizens advisory committee in place that is working to draft a new plan, which will be presented to the public in the near future before the plan is placed on the countywide ballot for voter consideration. The RTA’s 2006-voter approved regional transportation plan and tax expire in June 2026.
The RTA Board has committed funding up to the ballot amount to complete remaining RTA projects in the current plan. The RTA also is working with its member jurisdictions to address non-RTA funding needs for costs over the ballot amount due to cost increases, ineligible scope costs, or incremental cost increases due to locally preferred project scope changes.
The recommendation moves to the Technical Management Committee, which may consider the recommendation before moving it to the RTA Board.
The Regional Transportation Authority is the fiscal manager of the $2.1 billion plan approved by Pima County voters on May 16, 2006. The RTA Board is comprised of representatives from the local jurisdictions in Pima County, including the cities of Tucson and South Tucson, Pima County, the towns of Marana, Oro Valley and Sahuarita, the Pascua Yaqui Tribe and the Tohono O’odham Nation. A representative of the Arizona State Transportation Board also serves on the board. For more information about the RTA plan, visit RTAmobility.com or call (520) 792-1093.