Friday, March 27, 2009

No fed funds for Phoenix “Sky Train” just yet

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Despite press predictions to the contrary, no stimulus funds were forthcoming Thursday for Phoenix’s “PHX Sky Train,” a $1.1 billion, 4.8-mile project now under construction that would link Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport with Valley Metro’s new light rail line, which opened in late December.

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, visiting Arizona’s state capital Thursday and Friday, did announce $28 million in stimulus funds for airport-related construction, and said he planned to meet with area light rail officials and business leaders.

Phoenix seeks $200 million in federal funding for Sky Train, which would employ automated guideway technology and replace current bus shuttle service to and from Valley Metro LRT at 44th and Washington streets. 

Valley Metro’s initial 28-station, 20-mile light rail line, serving Phoenix, Tempe, and Mesa, Ariz., cost $1.4 billion.