City News

Newsnet July 31

TUCSON OFFERS TESLA BUILDING PERMIT - In an effort to lure Tesla Motors' battery-making factory to Tucson, the City of Tucson has offered the company a building permit to start construction of a $3 billion plant. The permit is for a one-story building of up to 5 million square feet in size at an address “to be determined." Mayor Jonathan Rothschild this week sent the permit and a brief letter to Tesla officials. “Attached is a City of Tucson permit, ready for your signature,” the letter reads.

Kids Expo August 2

 

Arizona Bilingual is hosting a Kids Expo at the El Pueblo Center, 101 West Irvington, Saturday, August 2, at 10 a.m..

 

Health, education, kids activities, painting, arts & crafts, school information,  health information and special events and much more will be offered at this Expo.

 

More than 500 hundred back packs and school supplies will be given away at the Expo.  Other special items will be raffled off as well at the event.

 

NewsNet 07-31-14

TUCSON OFFERS TESLA BUILDING PERMIT - In an effort to lure Tesla Motors' battery-making factory to Tucson, the City of Tucson has offered the company a building permit to start construction of a $3 billion plant. The permit is for a one-story building of up to 5 million square feet in size at an address “to be determined." Mayor Jonathan Rothschild this week sent the permit and a brief letter to Tesla officials. “Attached is a City of Tucson permit, ready for your signature,” the letter reads. “Just letting you know the City of Tucson is ready to proceed as soon as you are.” Competing states have offered discounted electricity and free land, and have introduced bills to allow direct sales of Tesla’s vehicles, which states such as Arizona currently ban. Tesla officials have said previously that the company wants to pick one or two sites this year and begin battery production at one of them by 2017. Read more from the Arizona Daily Star.
 
NEW DOWNTOWN TUCSON PARTNERSHIP REPORT QUANTIFIES SUCCESS OF STREETCAR - The economic impact of the Sun Link Tucson Streetcar continues to grow. Even though the streetcar began passenger service less than a week ago, economic development along the 3.9-mile route has been heavy since voters approved the streetcar and RTA plan back in 2006. The latest estimate from the Downtown Tucson Partnership quantifies more than $900 million in public and private investment along the line from west of Interstate-10, downtown, 4th Avenue and the University of Arizona.
 
STREETCARS KEEP WINNING SCRAMBLE FOR FEDERAL MASS TRANSIT PROJECT FUNDING - In the competition for urban transit funding, light rail and streetcars are winning and buses remain runners up. Although more capital intensive than bus systems, light rail and streetcars dominate the list of 53 mass transit projects being funded or under consideration in the FTA’s New Starts program. The $196 million Sun Link Tucson Streetcar was funded in part by a $63 million Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant – part of the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Of the 53 projects recently funded nationwide, 30 of them were light rail or streetcar projects, and only 18 were “bus rapid transit” (BRT) – buses running in a dedicated lane closed to other traffic. The rest were for heavy rail projects. Read more from Roll Call.
 
CITY OF TUCSON DEPARTMENT OF PROCUREMENT WINS ANOTHER NATIONAL AWARD - The City of Tucson’s Department of Procurement recently was awarded the Achievement of Excellence in Procurement Award (AEP) for 2014. The award, from the National Procurement Institute, recognizes innovation, professionalism, e-procurement, productivity, and leadership attributes. The City of Tucson is one of only 14 government agencies in Arizona - and one of 68 cities in the United States - to receive the award. The City is one of only six agencies to receive the AEP award for all 19 years since its inception. Under the leadership of Director Marcheta Gillespie, Tucson’s Department of Procurement consistently wins awards for its work.
 
REID PARK ZOO AND DESERT MUSEUM JOIN TO SUPPORT CONSERVATION - The Reid Park Zoo will join several other conservation organizations Saturday night at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum's Cool Summer Nights from 6 p.m.-9 p.m. The evening will focus on conservation projects the organizations support. There also will be information on rainwater harvesting, buffelgrass, fire prevention, birding games, and threatened and endangered species.

TUCSON TO HOST ASA 18 AND UNDER CLASS A WESTERN NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP FASTPITCH SOFTBALL TOURNAMENT

The City of Tucson Parks and Recreation Department, along with the
Arizona Amateur Softball Association (ASA) and Visit Tucson, will be
hosting the ASA 18 and under girls fastpitch Class A Western National
Championship tournament from July 30 through August 3, 2014. The
tournament will be held at Lincoln Park, 8116 E. Escalante Rd, at the
new Lincoln softball complex. This complex features 4 lighted softball
fields, bleacher seating with roof for shade and a concessions building

NewsNet 07-30-14

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION: 'TUCSON'S SUN LINK ONE MORE REASON TO GROW AMERICA' - Fast Lane, the official blog of the U.S. Department of Transportation, says, "Sun Link is a good example of modern streetcar services that are bringing a new transportation option to communities across the country – or in some cases, bringing back an old one." The blog mentions that nearly 100,000 people live and work within a quarter-mile of the 3.9-mile Sun Link route. That’s helped attract more than $800 million in public and private investment along the corridor since the service was announced, including housing, restaurants, offices, and retail. The American-made streetcar investment in Arizona – funded in part by a grant from DOT's TIGER program – is also supporting jobs for families in Portland, Oregon, where the modern streetcars are manufactured.
 
AZ CHAPTER OF AMERICAN PUBLIC WORKS ASSOCIATION (APWA) NAMES TUCSON STREETCAR 'PROJECT OF THE YEAR '- The Arizona APWA named the Sun Link Tucson Streetcar the Public Works Project of the Year at its annual conference in Tucson yesterday. The $196 million project, co-managed by the City of Tucson and the Regional Transportation Authority, launched service last Friday with more than 60,000 people riding the streetcar during three days of free rides. The Arizona Chapter of the APWA cited key successes of the streetcar project, including a high level of cooperation among all partners, the creation of more than 500 construction-related jobs, more than $800 million in public and private investment along the route, installation of $19 million in needed infrastructure improvements, extensive outreach to the public and businesses along the route, emphasis on American jobs and materials for the project, and collaboration among various populations and neighborhoods along the streetcar route. The project was recognized for the same honor in April by the Southern Arizona APWA Branch. The streetcar project is considered to be Tucson’s largest and most-complex transportation construction project in city history.
 
D-M HONORS TWO TUCSONANS FOR THEIR SUPPORT - Ward 4 Tucson City Council Member Shirley Scott and Mike Grassinger recently were each given the honorary title of "Community Wingman" at a recent ceremony at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base. Council Member Scott is a longtime supporter of D-M, which is in Ward 4, and Grassinger is Principle of AZ Planning Center and a former president of DM-50, a nonprofit volunteer service organization that supports and funds initiatives to improve the quality of life for D-M's airmen. The Davis-Monthan Community Wingman program recognizes Tucson community leaders who have given support to many D-M missions.
 
MOVIES IN THE PARK SERIES CONTINUES AT REID PARK - Looking for some family-friendly entertainment on Friday nights over the summer? Movies in the Park, a Tucson summer staple since 2003, returns Friday at Reid Park with a free showing of "Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader." Residents are invited to bring blankets and chairs to enjoy a free movie every other Friday at the DeMeester Performing Arts Pavilion, 900 S. Randolph Way. The events begin at 5:30 p.m. with live music, jumping castles, balloon animals, and arts and crafts exhibits from nonprofits. Popcorn, soda, and food truck vendors will be available for an additional charge. The Movies in the Park program is hosted by Cox Communications and the Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance. Read more from Tucson News Now.
FIND A BARGAIN AT CITY SURPLUS - Need an Amazon Kindle? Maybe an iPod better fits your entertainment needs? How about a laptop, or a steam cleaner? You can find these items and more on the City of Tucson's surplus auction website.

Newsnet - July 29

CITY, MERCHANTS EXCITED ABOUT NEW STREETCAR - More than 60,000 people rode the Sun Link Tucson Streetcar during its first three days of operations and Sun Link officials and merchants are still talking about the success. Businesses along the streetcar enjoyed a steady stream of customers as people took advantage of special discounts. “We were pleasantly surprised that the traffic was steady all day long, and there was a mixed crowd of people,” said Jane McCollum, general manager of the Marshall Foundation, which manages most of the real estate at Main Gate Square on University Boulevard.

NewsNet 07-29-14

CITY, MERCHANTS EXCITED ABOUT NEW STREETCAR - More than 60,000 people rode the Sun Link Tucson Streetcar during its first three days of operations and Sun Link officials and merchants are still talking about the success. Businesses along the streetcar enjoyed a steady stream of customers as people took advantage of special discounts. “We were pleasantly surprised that the traffic was steady all day long, and there was a mixed crowd of people,” said Jane McCollum, general manager of the Marshall Foundation, which manages most of the real estate at Main Gate Square on University Boulevard. “We had one merchant who commented that it felt like school had just opened,” she said, adding that most Main Gate tenants have enjoyed strong sales all summer. Merchants downtown and along 4th Avenue expressed similar sentiments. Read more from the Arizona Daily Star.

ENJOY SUMMER DISCOUNTS AT MANY MERCHANTS ALONG THE STREETCAR ROUTE - Many businesses along the 3.9 mile streetcar route continue to celebrate Sun Link with special deals until the end of August via the “Connect in the City” discount card. The card costs $5 and offers hundreds of dollars in discounts this summer at restaurants, bars, and stores along Fourth Avenue, Main Gate, Downtown Tucson and at the Mercado San Augustin. The card is valid though the end of August and is good for unlimited use. You can buy a "Connect in the City" card online.

SUNGO CARDS ACCEPTED ON BOTH SUN LINK STREETCAR AND SUN TRAN BUSES - The SunGO card is the best way to pay fares when riding public transit in Tucson. The card works on both the Sun Tran bus system and the Sun Link Tucson Streetcar. A SunGO card with unlimited rides for a month is just $42. If you're an occasional rider, you can load the SunGO card with a cash value to pay the $1.50 one-way fares whenever you use transit.  In addition, there are many discounts available for students, low-income residents, seniors and others. If you ride the streetcar, you must have a SunGO card, or purchase a day pass with cash or a credit card from a vending machine at the stop. Cash is not accepted on the streetcar. 
Watch How to Ride video for streetcar
Cómo Viajar video
 
GIRLS SOFTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP TOURNAMENT IN TUCSON THIS WEEK - The City of Tucson Parks and Recreation Department, along with the Arizona Amateur Softball Association (ASA) and Visit Tucson, will be hosting the ASA 18 and under girls fastpitch Class A Western National Championship tournament starting tomorrow, through August 3, at Lincoln Park (8116 E. Escalante Road) at the new Lincoln softball complex. The complex features four lighted softball fields, bleacher seating with shade, and a concessions building with restrooms. The tournament features 17 teams from across the west coast. Read the news release/schedule.
 
NEED HELP STARTING OR EXPANDING A BUSINESS IN TUCSON? CALL THE SMALL BUSINESS ASSISTANCE LINE - The City of Tucson's Small Business Assistance Line, (520) 837-4100, is available from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Help is available in both English and Spanish. Staff from the City Manager's Office of Economic Initiatives answer the calls. The Small Business Assistance Line is one of a number of City initiatives, along with 21 new business incentives, streamlined permit processes and more, to make the City of Tucson more business-friendly.

Sun Tran and Teamsters sign contract extension

Sun Tran officials and representatives from Teamsters Local 104 have agreed to extend the current labor contract until 11:59 p.m. Wednesday, August 6, 2014, to allow negotiations to continue. Buses will run as scheduled through the contract extension date. The current contract was to expire at midnight Thursday, July 31.

“Negotiations will continue this week and we are hopeful an agreement can be reached prior to the expiration of the contract extension,” said Sun Tran General Manager Kate Riley. “The public can expect business as usual through August 6.”

NewsNet 07-28-14

STREETCAR'S OPENING WEEKEND A HUGE SUCCESS -  Approximately 60,000 people rode the Sun Link Tucson Streetcar during its first three days of operation. Free fares, curiosity, fun activities, and merchant specials brought out the riders, who got their first taste of the 3.9 mile route between the University of Arizona, 4th Avenue, Downtown, and the Mercado area just west of Interstate-10. "The Sun Link streetcar system had a great first day of service,” said Sun Link Project Manager Shellie Ginn.

NewsNet 07-25-14

TUCSON STREETCAR NOW OPEN! -  With a variety of celebrations at various stops and a grand opening kickoff downtown, Tucsonans this morning got their first chance to ride the Sun Link Tucson Streetcar. Rides are free through Sunday. There are about 11,000 places to park along the route that make parking and riding easy. Many merchants along the 3.9 mile route from west of I-10, through 4th Avenue, to the University of Arizona, are offering specials during the streetcar's opening weekend.

Sixth Street - Campbell Avenue to Country Club Road Resurfacing Project

On Monday, July 28, 2014, crews from Southern Arizona Paving and Construction Co., under contract with the City of Tucson Department of Transportation (TDOT), will begin work to improve the roadway conditions on Sixth Street from Campbell Avenue to Country Club Road. The pavement improvement project is part of the $100 million, five-year street bond program - Road Recovery. The Road Recovery program is funded by voter-approved bonds.

SIXTH STREET - CAMPBELL AVENUE TO COUNTRY CLUB ROAD RESURFACING PROJECT

ROAD RECOVERY

SIXTH STREET - CAMPBELL AVENUE TO COUNTRY CLUB ROAD

RESURFACING PROJECT

On Monday, July 28, 2014, crews from Southern Arizona Paving and Construction Co., under contract with the City of Tucson Department of Transportation (TDOT), will begin work to improve the roadway conditions on Sixth Street from Campbell Avenue to Country Club Road. The pavement improvement project is part of the $100 million, five-year street bond program - Road Recovery. The Road Recovery program is funded by voter-approved bonds.

NewsNet 07-24-14

TUCSON STREETCAR SERVICE BEGINS TOMORROW, FREE RIDES FOR ALL THROUGH SUNDAY - The much-anticipated launch of passenger service on the Sun Link Tucson Streetcar begins at approximately 10 a.m. tomorrow. Opening celebrations will take place along many of the stops on the 3.9 mile route from west of I-10, through 4th Avenue, to the University of Arizona. Rides will be free Friday through Sunday. Starting Monday, payment for rides will be required. Riding a streetcar is different than riding a bus. Cash is not accepted on the car (but you can use it at machines at the stops to buy a $4 one-day pass), and you can bring your bike on the streetcar. The City of Tucson has a video that tells you everything you need to know about how to ride the streetcar. Please take a look at it before your first ride.
Cómo viajar video
Opening morning riding tips and more
Opening weekend events
 
TRAFFIC ALERT: STREETCAR CELEBRATIONS TO CLOSE SOME ROADS BRIEFLY - Beginning tonight at approximately 6:30, the right lane of Congress Street, between Fourth Avenue and Fifth Avenue, will be closed, leaving one travel lane open on Congress. Also, at approximately 6:30 tonight, Fifth Avenue will be closed between Toole Avenue and Broadway. In order to facilitate downtown business traffic, the left lane of Congress will remain open until approximately 5 a.m. tomorrow. At 5 a.m., Congress Street will be closed completely, from Toole Avenue to Sixth Avenue. Toole will be converted to one-way westbound travel between Fourth Avenue and Pennington Street (similar to the traffic pattern that was utilized for the streetcar construction). All streets should reopen to traffic by noon on Friday. Read the news release.
 
TUCSON SEES BIG BOOST IN PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION USE
- While the Sun Link Tucson Streetcar will no doubt increase public transportation use in Tucson, the pattern already has emerged. A study of statewide transportation trends found Tucson and Phoenix residents are driving less and seeking alternative modes of transportation. In the Tucson area, the number of public transit trips increased by nearly 25 percent between 2005 and 2010, according to the report by the Arizona Public Interest Research Group (ArizonaPIRG), with funding from the St. Luke's Health Initiative. In addition, annual driving miles per capita in Arizona decreased by 10.5 percent between 2005 and 2012, according to federal highway usage statistics and census data cited by researchers. Much of the shift is being led by people between the ages of 18 to 34. Read more from azcentral.com.
 
DESIGN CONCEPTS BEING SOUGHT FOR TUCSON’S JANUARY 8TH MEMORIAL - The January 8th Memorial Foundation and the Tucson Pima Arts Council invite designers to submit their qualifications and design interests to create a Master Plan Concept for El Presidio Park downtown and a schematic design for a January 8th Memorial. The memorial will commemorate both the tragic events of January 8, 2011 and the ways in which the Tucson community proved that "Together We Thrive." The application deadline to submit a design is Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2014 at 11 p.m. The budget for the scope of work is $90,000, and each finalists will receive a $5,000 stipend. Read more from the Tucson Pima Arts Council.
 
CATCH UP ON CITY NEWS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED - Mayor Jonathan Rothschild works to strengthen ties with Mexico; it’s time to get streetcar street smart; and a dream comes true for Menlo Park residents. Those stories are featured in this month's edition of Tucson City News in Review, produced by Tucson 12.

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