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Phoenix Light Rail Tour with U.S. Transportation Secretary Mendez and Phoenix Elected Officials

September 18, 2019


[SHOW THEME MUSIC]>>WE’RE OUT HERE LOOKING AT
SOME REALLY FABULOUS PLANS FOR THE FUTURE FOR THE SOUTH CENTRAL
AREA OF PHOENIX, LOOKING AT EXTENDING THE LIGHT RAIL SYSTEM
DOWN INTO THIS AREA TO HELP US BETTER CONNECT THE COMMUNITY
WITH EDUCATION, WITH HEALTHCARE, AND ALL THE OTHER THINGS THAT
THE REST OF THE CITY HAS ACCESS TO. SO IT’S VERY IMPORTANT FOR ALL
US. WE AT THE FEDERAL LEVEL ARE VERY
SUPPORTIVE. WE’RE GOOD PARTNERS IN THIS
PROJECT. AND WE’RE GOING TO CONTINUE TO
WORK WITH THE COMMUNITY ON THIS.>>LIGHT RAIL IS SO IMPORTANT,
BUSINESS AND PEOPLE TRANSPORTATION. TALK A LITTLE BUILT ABOUT HOW
HIGH LIGHT RAIL BENEFITS THE COMMUNITY.>>WELL, YOU HAVE TO LOOK AT THE
FUTURE. EVERYTHING WE DO IS ABOUT THE
FUTURE, AND HOW DO YOU INVEST IN THE FUTURE OF THE COMMUNITY? AND ONCE YOU DO THAT AND YOU
MOVE FORWARD ON THE ACTUAL INVESTMENTS, WHAT YOU’RE GOING
TO SEE IS THIS ENTIRE CORRIDOR, SIMILAR TO CENTRAL AVENUE NORTH
OF THE CITY, YOU SEE THE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT THAT
OCCURRED THERE, THE OPPORTUNITIES THAT ARE OUT
THERE, THE UNIVERSITY THAT MOVED OUT THERE, AND ON AND ON. ALL OF THESE REALLY GOOD THINGS
FOR THE COMMUNITY TO BE ABLE TO CONNECT PEOPLE TO JOBS,
TO ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY FOR THE FUTURE, AND LIKE I SAID,
EDUCATION BEING EXTREMELY IMPORTANT, BEING ABLE TO CONNECT
THE YOUNG GENERATION FROM THIS SIDE OF THE CITY TO EDUCATION IS
VERY IMPORTANT.>>PHOENICIANS ARE ALWAYS
INTERESTED IN FUNDING. WHAT IS THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT
DOING TO HELP OUT WITH FUNDING ON THESE EXTRA MILES?>>WELL, WE’RE NORMALLY VERY
GOOD PARTNERS ON THE FUNDING SIDE. JUST VERY RECENTLY, ABOUT TWO
WEEKS AGO, WE ANNOUNCED A TIGER GRANT, $1.6 MILLION TO HELP WITH
THE PLANNING PHASES OF THIS EXTENSION. SO THAT’S GOING TO MOVE FORWARD
PRETTY QUICKLY. BUT OVERALL ON A NATIONAL BASIS
WE’RE DOING EVERYTHING WE CAN TO WORK WITH CONGRESS, THE OBAMA
ADMINISTRATION, AND OTHERS TO MAKE SURE THAT WE AS A COUNTRY
INVEST IN OUR INFRASTRUCTURE. SO WE HAVE PROPOSED A GROW
AMERICA ACT THAT BRINGS TO THE TABLE $302 BILLION OVER FOUR
YEARS ACROSS THE NATION TO IMPROVE PORTS, ROADWAYS,
BRIDGES, PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION AND RAIL. SO WE’RE DOING EVERYTHING WE CAN
ON A NATIONAL BASIS TO FOCUS THE IMPORTANCE OF INVESTING IN OUR
INFRASTRUCTURE, NOT JUST FOR TODAY, BUT REALLY LOOKING TOWARD
THE YEAR 2050.>>WELL, THE DEPUTY SECRETARY
FOR TRANSPORTATION, WHO HAPPENS TO BE FROM ARIZONA, IS BACK HERE
LOOKING AT SOME KEY TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS,
INCLUDING THE FUTURE LIGHT RAIL LINE HERE IN SOUTH CENTRAL
PHOENIX. I COULDN’T BE MORE EXCITED ABOUT
THE OPPORTUNITY TO SHOW HIM WHAT WE HAVE HERE. LIGHT RAIL IN SOUTH MOUNTAIN
VILLAGE ALONG CENTRAL AVENUE WILL REALLY TRANSFORM THIS
NEIGHBORHOOD, BRING ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES, BRING
SOME NEW HOUSING OPPORTUNITIES, AND CONNECT PEOPLE FROM SOUTH
MOUNTAIN VILLAGE TO EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES, TO EMPLOYMENT
OPPORTUNITIES, TO HOUSING, TO DOCTOR’S APPOINTMENTS. IT WILL REALLY BETTER CONNECT
THIS COMMUNITY. SO I COULDN’T BE MORE EXCITED
ABOUT THIS PROJECT. IN PARTICULAR, THE PRESIDENT HAS
INDICATED THAT HE WANTS HIS PROGRAMS THAT HE SUPPORTS TO BE
PROGRAMS CALLED LADDERS OF OPPORTUNITY, REALLY CONNECTING
PEOPLE TO ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY, AND THERE WOULD BE NO BETTER
LADDER OF OPPORTUNITY PROJECT IN THE ENTIRE COUNTRY, I WOULD
ARGUE, THAN LIGHT RAIL HERE IN SOUTH MOUNTAIN VILLAGE ON
CENTRAL AVENUE. IT WILL REALLY UPLIFT PEOPLE AND
INCREASE THEIR ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES. SO I COULDN’T BE MORE EXCITED
ABOUT IT. IRONICALLY, WHEN YOU DO LIGHT
RAIL, YOU IMPROVE THE INFRASTRUCTURE. THERE WILL BE A LOT OF POWER
LINES, ET CETERA, THAT ARE UNDERNEATH THE GROUND, SERVICES
THAT ARE UNDERGROUND, THAT GET MOVED AND UPGRADED AS A RESULT
OF LIGHT RAIL. SO I BELIEVE THAT TRANSPORTATION
INFRASTRUCTURE IS AS IMPORTANT AS ANY OTHER INFRASTRUCTURE WE
CAN PROVIDE THE PEOPLE OF OUR CITY, AND WE DO IMPROVE THE
OVERALL INFRASTRUCTURE AS A CITY FOR DOING SO. SO THIS IS REALLY A WIN-WIN IN
THAT REGARD. SO I DON’T — SOME PEOPLE WANT
TO JUXTAPOSE TRANSPORTATION INFRASTRUCTURE WITH OTHER FORMS
OF INFRASTRUCTURE. IF YOU’RE GOING TO LOOK AT THE
INFRASTRUCTURE OF A CITY, TRANSPORTATION, IMPROVING YOUR
ROADS, IMPROVING LIGHT RAIL, IMPROVING YOUR BRIDGES,
TRANSPORTATION INFRASTRUCTURE, WHICH IS EXACTLY WHAT WE’RE
TALKING ABOUT, IS AS IMPORTANT AS ANY OTHER INFRASTRUCTURE FOR
OUR CITY.>>SO MANY OF OUR RIDERS ON
LIGHT RAIL ARE STUDENTS, AND THEY DON’T ALWAYS GET THE
CHANCE TO GET THAT TYPE OF AN EXPERIENCE. THIS WILL ALSO BE A GREAT ENGINE
FOR CONNECTING OUR WAREHOUSE DISTRICT WITH THE REST OF THE
CITY, WHICH IS ONE OF OUR HUBS OF SMALL BUSINESS GROWTH. A LOT OF OUR FASTEST GROWING
START-UPS LIKE WEB PT ARE BASED IN THE WAREHOUSE DISTRICT. IT’S REALLY BEEN ATTRACTING MORE
ENTREPRENEURIAL INDIVIDUALS AND A LOT OF OUR ARTISTS, AND THIS
WAY THEY’LL HAVE THAT CONNECTION TO DOWNTOWN AND TO THE REST OF
THE CITY, AND WE’RE VERY HOPEFUL AS PHOENIX EXPANDS THOSE SMALL
BUSINESSES THAT THEY’LL BE AN ASSET FOR ALL OF THE COMMUNITY
AND PEOPLE WILL BE ABLE TO GET TO THOSE JOBS MORE EASILY. IT IS AN AREA THAT WAS DESIGNED
FOR PRODUCE WAREHOUSES NEAR THE RAILROAD, BUT THERE’S NOT A LOT
OF PARKING, AND HAVING PEOPLE BE ABLE TO GET THERE BY LIGHT RAIL
WILL BE VERY IMPORTANT.>>THERE’S A LOT OF
INFRASTRUCTURE IMPROVEMENTS THAT GO ALONG WITH THE LIGHT RAIL
PROJECT AS WELL, LIKE UTILITIES, ELECTRICITY AND WATER, ALL THE
PIPES AND THINGS LIKE THAT. EVERYTHING BENEFITS FROM THAT.>>RIGHT. THIS WILL GET A LOT MORE MODERN
INFRASTRUCTURE IN THE AREA WHICH WILL HELP WITH OTHER DEVELOPMENT
ALONG CENTRAL IN PARTICULAR. WE HAVE A LOT OF VACANT LAND
ALONG CENTRAL RIGHT NOW, AND HAVING THAT UPGRADED
INFRASTRUCTURE WILL HELP THAT REDEVELOP. SO WE’RE HOPEFUL THAT WE’LL
HAVE A LOT MORE RIBBON CUTTINGS ALONG CENTRAL AVENUE AS A RESULT
OF THIS PROJECT. LIGHT RAIL HAS BROUGHT BILLIONS
OF DOLLARS IN INVESTMENT ALONG THE LINES ALREADY, AND THIS IS
AN AREA WHERE BECAUSE OF THE VACANT LANDS THAT INVESTMENT
SHOULD BE ABLE TO HAPPEN QUITE QUICKLY.>>YOU KNOW, WE’VE BEEN WORKING
ON THIS FOR THE LAST TWO YEARS. DISTRICT 7 HAS THE MAJORITY OF
THE LIGHT RAIL FROM THE RIVER BOTTOM ALL THE WAY TO BASELINE,
AND THEN FROM THE RAILROAD TRACKS ALL THE WAY INTO DOWNTOWN
PHOENIX. SO THIS IS GREAT. WE’VE BEEN MEETING WITH
COMMUNITY LEADERS, NONPROFIT LEADERS, AND THIS IS SOMETHING
THAT’S GOING TO REALLY HELP OUT SOUTH PHOENIX. BECAUSE YOU HAVE A LOT OF
WORKING FAMILIES, AND ONE OF THE BIGGEST THINGS THAT WE HAVE OUT
HERE IS A LOT OF FAMILIES ONLY HAVE ONE VEHICLE, AND THE FATHER
WORKS CONSTRUCTION, THE MOTHER MIGHT BE WORKING CLEANING
OFFICES AT NIGHTTIME. SO HOW DO YOU GET BACK AND
FORTH? THIS LIGHT RAIL IS GOING TO HELP
OUT. WE HAVE 18,000 NEW STUDENTS IN
DOWNTOWN PHOENIX GOING TO ASU. ALL THE STUDENTS THAT ARE
GRADUATING FROM SOUTH MOUNTAIN AND ALL THE SCHOOLS DOWN HERE
IN SOUTH PHOENIX WILL BE ABLE TO JUMP ON THE LIGHT RAIL AND
JUST GO DOWNTOWN TO ASU. SO ALL KINDS OF GREAT
OPPORTUNITIES, OPPORTUNITIES FOR GROWTH, OPPORTUNITIES FOR NEW
BUSINESSES, OPPORTUNITIES FOR SO MUCH IN SOUTH PHOENIX. SO WE THANK THE $1.6 MILLION OF
THE TIGER GRANT THAT’S REALLY GOING TO TALK ABOUT THE
OPPORTUNITIES WE HAVE HERE IN PHOENIX. CLOSED CAPTION PRODUCTIONS
– www.ccproductions.com –

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