Scottsdale City Council halts fixed-rail push in Transportation Master Plan update | Scottsdale Independent

Scottsdale Vice Mayor David Smith says the notion of suggesting Scottsdale Road downtown is not a key part of a Light Rail route within city limits is disingenuous.

“I am disappointed we are talking about this,” he said. “To try and diffuse the situation by saying we are not using Scottsdale Road is simplistic at its best and devious at its worse.”

I agree with that statement and sentiment…but it’s important to recognize that yet-again, David Smith’s position is the same as the council majority. If his was the swing vote on this issue–which it may very well be in the future, and mind-you, this is far from a dead issue–he could easily be singing a different tune.

Scottsdale City Manager Fritz Behring last year saying rail should not be considered in the update due to the 2009 vote where Scottsdale residents voted down a Light Rail measure.

So much for Virginia Korte’s lie (and there’s no way to be diplomatic with it) that we haven’t yet had the voters weigh in on this issue.

Scottsdale Councilwoman Virginia Korte disagrees and points out pillars of the Scottsdale business community have pledged their support to pursuing high-capacity transit options in the future transit landscape of Scottsdale.

“I believe the most important conversation we can have tonight is about the connectivity we have with the rest of the region,” she said.

“I think we need to take into consideration our visitors. Our (convention and visitor’s bureau) has determined that high-capacity transit is a critical issue. This is based on market research.”

If that’s the case and our lack of light rail is such a problem for tourists, why are we still the envy of the Valley when it comes to tourism and tourism revenue? This is another Korte lie.

“Companies moving to Scottsdale need to understand that we are looking ahead to their future transportation needs,” [Scottsdale Area Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Mark Hiegel] said of why it is important to consider all aspects of multi-modal transit options.

“Specific businesses like healthcare and resorts need to get their workers and staff in and out of our great city…”

Herein perhaps we find a grain of truth that gets to the heart of light rail support by developers and the liquor industry who dominate the Chamber of Commerce. Over the past twenty years they’ve managed to get a complicit Mayor Jim Lane and the council majority to erode our parking requirements so much that this is beginning to impact their workforce!

Source: Scottsdale City Council halts fixed-rail push in Transportation Master Plan update | Scottsdale Independent

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2 Comments

  1. scottsdale is not the envy of the valley, its time to get over yourselves. I like living here but you guys never think about the future and future generations of this city. Council and the northern 20% of the city may not support ideas like light rail, but the other 80% do and would use it. Especially the younger generations you are trying to attract to scottsdale with the glut of condos and apartments you keep allowing to be built in central and south scottsdale.

    1. Interesting perspective, but factually lacking.

      Those in the city council majority absolutely do support light rail and have for many years. Unfortunately for you and the other supporters of light rail, it’s an election year. That’s why the council majority voted against it. But never fear, they wouldn’t have done so if they didn’t already have plans for a work-around.

      The “northern 20%” is actually more likely to support light rail than the rest, because they will never be affected by it like those of us who live downtown, and the merchants who will suffer terribly during construction.

      As for “the younger generations you are trying to attract to Scottsdale with the glut of condos and apartments you keep allowing to be built…,” I have no interest in directly attracting anyone but our historically affluent tourists. It is those folks who have financed the Scottsdale that–whether you like and recognize it–is widely seen as the most successful city in the Valley. Why do you think property values are higher here than anywhere else?

      And I have fought vigorously AGAINST the high-rise housing projects you describe, because they only erode the physical character of the city to which our tourists have historically been attracted.

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