Light rail expansion coming to downtown Phoenix

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The Phoenix City Council approved a new plan to expand the Valley Metro light rail, making downtown Phoenix the light rail hub with its transition to a true regional system. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) The Phoenix City Council approved a new plan to expand the Valley Metro light rail, making downtown Phoenix the light rail hub with its transition to a true regional system. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
The newly approved plan will shift future light rail platforms east on Washington and Jefferson streets between Central and First avenues. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) The newly approved plan will shift future light rail platforms east on Washington and Jefferson streets between Central and First avenues. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

The Phoenix City Council approved a new plan to expand the Valley Metro light rail, making downtown Phoenix the light rail hub with its transition to a true regional system.

The newly approved plan will shift future light rail platforms east on Washington and Jefferson streets between Central and First avenues. It will also add a light rail station on Central Avenue between Jefferson and Washington streets, creating an easy way for riders to transfer from one train to another.

"As light rail expands massively, these new platforms make our system more efficient, and maximize connectivity for passengers trying to get downtown, uptown, to the airport and eventually to south Phoenix,” said Mayor Greg Stanton in a news release.

City staff from several departments have been working with downtown stakeholders and Valley Metro on the plan for months to protect the needs of light rail riders, drivers, pedestrians, residents and business owners in the downtown area.

This new plan to the light rail will add an additional track at Fifth Street and Third Avenue to provide turnaround locations that enhance service flexibility.

The new direction will be designed and constructed as part of the South Central Light Rail Extension project, which is being administered by Valley Metro. The 5-mile extension will connect downtown Phoenix to Baseline Road.

This project is being built a decade early thanks to the voter-approved transportation plan, which identified the extension as an important piece of future transit in Phoenix.

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