prepared to fight freeway
The Arizona Republic
Jan. 27, 2006 12:00 AM
Tolleson residents and businesses are worried
about the South Mountain Freeway's impact on them, and Mayor Adolfo F. Gámez
summed up the consensus.
"The city of Tolleson is against any alternative, anything coming through
Tolleson," Gámez said. "We're going to fight this."
The Arizona Department of Transportation's presentation drew about 100 people to
the Tolleson Senior Center this week. ADOT has proposed linking the freeway's
western leg to Interstate 10 at 55th Avenue, 71st Avenue or Loop 101.
"If it's going to come through Tolleson,
it's going to destroy houses, and then there's the possibility that the property
taxes will go up for the rest of the homes here," said Oladapo Odumosu, who
moved into his home on Watkins Street about three months ago.
ADOT spokesman Matt Burdick said, "The decision we ultimately make on the
project is based on the input we get from the community."
The 6-square-mile city would lose about 310 to 370 acres if an alignment comes
through. Fourteen lanes of traffic would be installed in the Van Buren Street
"We're growing fairly rapidly, just like Tolleson is, and we have future
growth in mind," said Randy Frank, plant manager for the Bay State Milling
Co. The business, at 99th Avenue between Van Buren Street and Buckeye Road, has
37 employees and distributes flour to Valley bakeries. "The two alignments
take up some property that would facilitate our future growth."
City officials support the 55th Avenue connection through Phoenix.