RTA Next is assembling a plan to take to voters

The plan will receive public input after December and before voters see it on the ballot in May 2025
Published: Sep. 12, 2023 at 6:18 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (13 News) - From Thornydale Road on the northwest side to Colossal Cave Road in Vail and points in between like Speedway Boulevard, the plan for the next 20 years of Regional Transportation Authority projects, called RTA Next, is under construction.

“I think that a lot of people that move here from larger urban areas will want it,” said Ken Fetterhoff from behind the wheel of his pickup truck along Colossal Cave Road.

Fetterhoff said he has called Vail home for 28 years and doesn’t want to see Colossal Cave Road widened.

“Take care of the infrastructure we have and not expand a road,” Fetterhoff said.

“That’s really the beauty of this process is that ultimately the voters get to decide,” said RTA Executive Director Farhad Moghimi.

He said RTA Next is still being put together and will get public input after December.

“We take public feedback and make a judgement that whatever we bring back to public for the ultimate vote is hopefully something that we have support from the majority of the folks that we’ve been hearing from,” Moghimi said.

Among the 33 new projects, along with four carried over from the current RTA plan, is widening Thornydale Road to four lanes between Cortaro and Tangerine roads for almost $47 million.

Modernizing Speedway Boulevard with bicycle, pedestrian, traffic signal and landscaping improvements between Alvernon Way and Wilmot Road has a more than $96 million price tag.

In Vail, the expansion of Colossal Cave Road to four lanes with bike and pedestrian improvements from I-10 to Mary Ann Cleveland Way will cost more than $57 million.

Currently, the total price tag is $2.34 billion over 20 years, fueled by continuing a half cent sales tax.

“No, I pay enough taxes,” Fetterhoff responded.

“You’re always going to have a few people that may vote in favor of something or against something for various reasons and obviously we respect the process and that’s why we go to the voters and ask the voters to give us the thumbs up and hopefully the majority will see the benefit of investing in ourselves and hopefully see projects on the list that they believe truly are priorities for the region,” Moghimi said.

The voters will decide in May 2025. That price tag includes safety, environmental and other elements. You can take a closer look at RTAnext.com

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