Do you think we should construct a new interstate in between our treasured Saguaro National Park and Ironwood Forest National Monument?
The Arizona Department of Transportation and the Federal Highways Administration are currently accepting public comments (deadline is this Friday, June 2!) on proposed corridor alternatives for a new interstate between Nogales and Wickenburg. [Want to read the Coalition’s comment letter? Head here.] We are opposed to Corridor Alternatives C & D which go right through Avra Valley…and right next to Saguaro National Park and Ironwood Forest National Monument.
It is well-established that new interstates bring with them new development, new roads, and more traffic. They are not stand-alone pieces of infrastructure. They come with exits, gas stations, frontage roads, and all kinds of new development. They also have negative impacts on viewsheds, natural quiet, dark skies, and other wilderness values.
Avra Valley is a biologically-rich part of our region with significant protected open space, wildlife linkages, and mitigation lands. Avra Valley is located right in between Pima County-owned Tucson Mountain Park and national treasure Saguaro National Park to the east and Ironwood Forest National Monument and the Tohono O’odham Nation to the west. It also contains mitigation lands managed by the Bureau of Reclamation for impacts from the Central Arizona Project canal, open space lands owned by Pima County and the Regional Flood Control District, and the Santa Cruz River. A new interstate through all of these protected lands would be devastating and irreversible.
Will you please submit an official public comment today opposing Corridor Alternatives C & D through Avra Valley?
The public comment period ends this Friday, June 2, 2017.
Verbal comments can be left at this phone number: (844) 544-8049
Comments can also be mailed to:
Interstate 11 Tier 1 EIS Study Team
c/o ADOT Communications
1655 W. Jackson St., Mail Drop 126F
Phoenix, AZ 85007
Need some talking points to get your started on your comments? Feel free to use these and make them your own:
- New interstates bring with them new development, new roads, and more traffic. They are not stand-alone pieces of infrastructure. They come with exits, gas stations, frontage roads, and all kinds of new development. They also have negative impacts on viewsheds, natural quiet, dark skies, and other wilderness values. It is unacceptable to locate a new interstate with this many impacts next to a national park and a national monument.
- Avra Valley is home to a rich mosaic of biologically-important lands, including a national park and a national monument on either side. The proposed Interstate 11 in southern Arizona should use the existing Interstate 10 corridor.
- We need to keep our public lands and wildlife linkages intact. Saguaro National Park is a national treasure that is already becoming increasingly isolated due to development pressure from Tucson and Marana to the east. Constructing a new interstate west of this national park would doom wildlife there forever.
- Should there be a proven need for expanded capacity, making improvements to the existing Interstate 10 corridor is the best alternative to manage increased traffic volumes in southern Arizona. All transportation options also need to be investigated, including an expanded rail corridor between Tucson and Phoenix and multi-modal transportation solutions generally.
Want to read the Coalition’s comment letter? Check it out here and feel free to quote us or use any of the language in our letter to help you with yours!
Thank you for speaking out and using your voice to make a difference!
Questions? Please give us a call at (520) 388-9925 or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.Tags: avra valley, I-11, Interstate 11, public comments