officials representing Ahwatukee Foothills have been swamped with calls from
constituents expressing their feelings about the proposed South Mountain
Freeway, an issue that has drawn more attention than nearly any other in
offices from Phoenix to Washington, D.C.
"People are understandably emotional when their homes are involved,"
state Rep. John McComish said. "We've been getting cries for help."
Last week, an Arizona Department of Transportation-sponsored open house in
Ahwatukee drew more than 2,000 residents and sparked a heated discussion on
the freeway that has since continued in neighborhoods and online.
Councilman Greg Stanton's office has received e-mails and
phone calls related to the freeway in the past few weeks. The debate has
recently heated up as specific plans have come forward.
"Certainly, the vast majority of people who contact our office are
opposed to the freeway," Stanton said.
That's not a universally shared sentiment. Staff at Councilman Doug Lingner's
office said that about half the comments from his West Valley constituents
have been supportive of the freeway. In online chat rooms, residents from
Ahwatukee and elsewhere in the Valley have rallied on behalf of the traffic
Since U.S. Rep. J.D. Hayworth released a statement Wednesday urging that the
freeway not be built, his offices have received 80 to 100 calls mostly in
favor of his stance, press secretary Larry VanHoose said.
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