Ahwatukee Republic ran a story
on the front page titled, "Freeway plans stirs emotions."
I called our Phoenix City Councilman, Greg Stanton, to get his take on the
issue of where on earth the southwestern leg of Loop 202 should be built.
"We wouldn't be having this discussion if it would have been built when
it was supposed to have been built," Stanton said.
took priority, and the southwest Loop fell out of the program."
In 2004, the freeway sales tax was extended by Maricopa County voters, and the
South Mountain Freeway, the southwestern segment of Loop 202, was funded
Stanton advocates taking advantage of the situation and choosing an alignment
that makes sense for 2005 rather than sticking with the 1985 plan.
"Twenty years is a lifetime in a city as fast growing as ours," Stanton said.
"We're looking forward, not back."
Stanton, aware that the Gila River Indian Community is a sovereign nation,
says it is an opportunity to work together on the development.
"We can't do anything that involves Indian land without their support and
approval," he said.
"We want them to be successful, and I want Phoenix to be
Stanton is passionate when he talks about the future of the area and the
possibilities of development.
It's possible to work it out to the mutual benefit of the Gila River community
and Ahwatukee Foothills.
Stanton continues to be a strong voice on the issue.
"Alignment south of Pecos Road continues to make the most sense," he
"I continue to take the path of least resistance."
If the state stays with the Pecos Road alignment, some homeowners interviewed
in The Republic story vowed that
it would not be the path of least resistance.
If it comes to the state buying their property and forcing them out, many
won't go willingly.
Arizona Department of Transportation is holding a public meeting on the
freeway alignment Nov. 17 from noon to 8 p.m. at the Grace Inn, 10831 S. 51st
St., in Ahwatukee Foothills.
I'm guessing that will be a pretty spirited meeting and might give people a
chance to vent their pent-up emotions for the first time in public.
Clay Schad graduated from the University of
Nebraska School of Journalism in 1976, founded and published the Ahwatukee
Foothills News for 20 years.