Phoenix’s METRO Light Rail Takes Flight
by Clarence Eckerson, Jr. on June 17, 2009
"Everyone knows that Phoenix has a huge sprawl problem. But now transit-oriented development is on the upswing in this Sun Belt metropolis. In December, the Phoenix region opened one of the most ambitious transit projects in recent U.S. history: a 20-mile light rail line with 28 stops serving three cities (Phoenix, Tempe, and Mesa). Future plans include an extension within three years, with several new corridors being studied.
The Valley Metro vehicles are handsome and comfortable, and thus far ridership has far exceeded initial projections -- with as many as 40,000 riders per day, compared to the expected 25,000. Each station features amenities and art installations. In addition, with many folks using the light rail as an intermodal step in their commutes, bicycles are welcome aboard."