TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - The final phase of the two-year Valencia Road Corridor construction project is done.
The Pima County Department of Transportation and the Regional Transportation Authority announced the end of the project on Friday, Sept. 4.
The $26.2 million construction project to improve 2.85 miles of Valencia Road widened the roadway to four lanes, improved drainage and added a raised, landscaped median. It also included public artwork by Jason E. Butler, who built the steel shade structures and Hirotsune Tashima, who created the life-like desert creatures, bike lanes in each direction and a multi-use pathway for pedestrians.
“PCDOT is proud to have completed the final segment of Valencia Road. Prior to the project, significant amounts of stormflow from the Black Wash would impact the earlier at grade two lane roadway causing local residents to have difficulty traveling thru the area,” Paul Bennett, PCDOT project delivery division manager, said. “As the project was nearing completion and certainly now, you can see people out walking and using the new pathway that runs along the south side of Valencia, stopping and posing for photos with the artwork.”
Valencia Road is a major east-west arterial on Tucson’s southwest side and is designated as a Scenic Major Route in the Pima County Major Streets and Routes Plan.
The RTA’s Roadway Improvement Plan, which was approved by Pima County voters in May 2006, proposed that the existing two-lane road be designed as a “desert parkway” and provide multi-modal transportation improvements. The total project area encompasses approximately 5.5 miles.