City News

NewsNet 09-29-14

TUCSON FIRE DEPARTMENT EXPERIENCES FLASHOVER WHILE BATTLING FIRE - Tucson firefighters battled a building fire Saturday at the 600 block of West Alturas street, which thermal cameras estimate was more than 700 degrees in parts of the structure. The roof of the unoccupied building in a mobile home park collapsed during the fire after a flashover (when the contents of a room suddenly and simultaneously ignite), and it took 62 firefighters and more than 150,000 gallons of water to quell the flames at the 5,000-square-foot building. There were no injuries, and the cause of the fire is under investigation. See the flashover and other videos at Tucson Fire Department Facebook page, and read the news release.
 
DESERT DIAMOND CUP TEAMS ANNOUNCED - FC Tucson and Major League Soccer announced Friday that six teams will take part in the 2015 FC Tucson Desert Diamond Cup. The competition, Feb. 18-28, will see the Colorado Rapids, Montreal Impact, New England Revolution, Real Salt Lake, Seattle Sounders and Sporting Kansas City compete. All games will be played at the North Kino Sports Complex. Visit Tucson pegs the competition's economic impact at $1.17 million, with an estimated attendance of 20,000 people. Rear more from MLSSoccer.com.
 
CATCH UP ON CITY NEWS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED - New City of Tucson residents are reaping some great benefits; the Gem Show makes Tucson shine; and after nearly two years of anticipation, Reid Park Zoo is enjoying "Nandi," its baby elephant. Those stories are featured in this month's edition of Tucson City News in Review, produced by Tucson 12.
 
WASHINGTON D.C. PUTS MODERN STREETCAR ON ROAD TODAY - Reminiscent of how Tucson began its Sun Link Tucson Streetcar service, the District of Columbia today began simulated service of its D.C. Streetcar along 2.4 miles of the first segment of the planned 37-mile route. During the month-long testing phase, D.C. will do what Tucson did, running the cars without passengers. United Streetcar is the manufacturer of the cars for both communities. Tucson ran several months of tests before beginning passenger service in July. Streetcar ridership in Tucson is higher than first predicted, with an average daily ridership of nearly 4,100 passengers along the 3.9-mile route. Read more from AP via Arizona Daily Star.
 
SCORE A DEAL ON CITY SURPLUS
- Need a pickup? Maybe hundreds of used folding chairs would come in handy for an event you're having? How about a couple of older iPods, or car stereo equipment? You can find these items and more on the City of Tucson's surplus auction website.

Newsnet - Sept. 29

STREETCAR RIDERSHIP HIGHER THAN PREDICTED - After two months in operation, the Sun Link Tucson Streetcar is averaging nearly 4,100 riders per day...higher than the original prediction of 3,600 passengers. The streetcar travels a 3.9-mile route through the University of Arizona, Fourth Avenue, Downtown Tucson, and the Mercado District, west of I-10. There are many fare options available to ride the streetcar. Cash is not accepted on the car, but you can use it at machines at the stops to buy a $4 one-day pass. In addition, you can buy SunGO passes online or at regular Sun Tran merchants.

Dr. Pepe Barrón

With deep sadness, the family and staff of Luz Social Services, Inc., Luz-Guerrero Early College High School and Adalberto M. Guerrero Middle School announce the death of its Founder and CEO/Superintendent Dr. Jose “Pepe” Barrón.

 

NewsNet 09-26-14

STREETCAR RIDERSHIP HIGHER THAN PREDICTED - After two months in operation, the Sun Link Tucson Streetcar is averaging nearly 4,100 riders per day...higher than the original prediction of 3,600 passengers. The streetcar travels a 3.9-mile route through the University of Arizona, Fourth Avenue, Downtown Tucson, and the Mercado District, west of I-10. There are many fare options available to ride the streetcar. Cash is not accepted on the car, but you can use it at machines at the stops to buy a $4 one-day pass. In addition, you can buy SunGO passes online or at regular Sun Tran merchants. Discount fares are available for certain students, low-income residents, seniors and disabled passengers. Read more from Arizona Public Media.

OCTOBER MEANS BIG EVENTS AND BIG CHANGES AT TUCSON CONVENTION CENTER - Disney on Ice and comedian Bill Maher have shows next month at the Tucson Convention Center (TCC), as the $8 million upgrade to the arena proceeds. The renovations are on schedule to be completed by the end of the year. Next month also marks the beginning of private management of the TCC, as SMG - a global leader in convention center management - takes over day-to-day operations of the facility. The City's contract with SMG runs through June 30, 2015 and can be renewed one year at a time over the next 10 years.

TRAFFIC ALERT: FOURTH AVENUE ACCESS TO DOWNTOWN DETOURED ONLY AS-NEEDED TONIGHT AND SATURDAY NIGHT - The City of Tucson Department of Transportation (TDOT) will detour southbound vehicular traffic at the Fourth Avenue Underpass into downtown on an as-needed basis to keep traffic flowing in the area. The Sun Link Streetcar, bicyclists, and pedestrians will not be affected. From this point forward, underpass closures on Friday and Saturday nights will only occur when vehicular traffic into downtown begins to get heavy.

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Fourth Avenue Access to Downtown Detour: Traffic Congestion to Determine Detour Times

Moving forward and until further notice, southbound motor vehicle travel through the Fourth Avenue Underpass will be detoured to Stevens Avenue on Friday nights and Saturday nights on an as-needed basis if Sun Link Streetcar operations are affected. Tucson police officers will continue to provide point control starting at 7 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays to assist with motor vehicle and pedestrian movements at the Congress Street, Fourth Avenue and Toole Avenue intersection.

ELEPHANT CALF AT REID PARK ZOO IS NAMED: NANDI

Reid Park Zoo's African elephant calf, now one month old, has a name! A
poll conducted through the Arizona Daily Star’s Caliente received
7,880 votes, with 65% selecting Nandi as her name.

Nandi (Nahn-dee) is a common siSwati girl’s name, and in the Zulu
language it means “sweet” or “fun.” This calf has proven herself
to be both - capturing the hearts of Tucson residents. With two older
brothers, this feminine name also celebrates the joy of welcoming a
female calf to Tucson.

NewsNet 09-25-14

THE WINNING NAME FOR TUCSON'S BIG BABY IS... - After a week of public voting between two names for Reid Park Zoo's one-month-old elephant, the calf will now be known as "Nandi," which handily beat out the other choice of "Imvula (Immie)." Nandi made her public debut in the main exhibit last Friday and has been charming Zoo visitors ever since. Read more from the From the Arizona Daily Star, and look below to find Tucson 12 video links to some of Nandi's milestones.
Video of Nandi about a week after her birth
Video of the Nandi's public debut on Sept. 19
Video of Nandi's mud show earlier this week
Zoo Cams
Baby Elephant FAQ
 
TWO TUCSON POLICE OFFICERS USE NEW TRAUMA KITS TO SAVE MAN'S LIFE - Two Tucson Police Department (TPD) officers are credited with helping save a man's life Tuesday after he was shot in the leg, and the officers rendered first-aid on the scene. Officers Adam Rodriguez and Randy Smith were the first to arrive at a shooting at West President Street, off West Ajo Way between South Sixth and Seventh avenues, said Sgt. Pete Dugan, a TPD spokesman. They treated the victim until Tucson Fire Department paramedics arrived. Officers used their trauma kits issued earlier this year, which are similar to ones used by the military. "There have been numerous times when officers have used the kits in the field to help people with life-threatening injuries," Dugan said. Read more from the Arizona Daily Star.
 
FORMER TUCSON FIRE CHIEF DAN NEWBURN PASSES AWAY - Retired Tucson Fire Chief Dan Newburn passed away last weekend at his home. He was surrounded by family. Chief Newburn was a member of the Tucson Fire Department from 1979 until he retired in 2008. He served as Chief from July 1, 2001 until his retirement on Sept. 12, 2008. The funeral service for Newburn will be private, but the Tucson Fire Department will honor him during the annual Firefighter Memorial Ceremony, Oct. 11th at 10 a.m. at Fire Central downtown. Read more from the Tucson Fire Department Facebook page.
 
UPDATE: TUCSON COMMUNITY HELPS DESIGN ALL-AGES PLAYGROUND - A successful community Design Day last week (see pictures) kicked off the first phase of the redesign of La Madera Park, 2700 E La Madera Drive, and the next phase begins next Tuesday with the removal of old playground equipment. The City of Tucson, Lend a Hand Senior Assistance, and Humana Inc. are working with KaBOOM! (a national non-profit organization that has built more than 2,300 playgrounds) to design a one-of-a-kind, multi-generational playground. The customized playground, funded primarily by Humana, will be created with personal drawings and other input from local community members, including children and seniors. The existing playground at La Madera Park, 2700 E. La Madera Drive, is in need of replacement, as it is outdated and contains some unusable components. The new design is senior-focused with adult elements, including fitness stations and walking paths to promote good posture, balance, and flexibility. There also will be traditional, kid-friendly equipment to create a multi-generational space. Read the news release from Parks and Recreation.
 
CITY OF TUCSON IS REMOVING ABANDONED SHOPPING CARTS - If you see a shopping cart off store property, abandoned along the street, or sitting in a wash, call the City of Tucson's Environmental Services (ES) department to have it removed. You can call Customer Service at (520) 791-3171 or use the 'My-Waste'™ app and choose the Report a Problem option. Watch a PSA about how the program works.

NewsNet 09-24-14

ANNEXATION BENEFICIAL TO NEIGHBORHOODS - Becoming part of the City of Tucson has its benefits for those currently on the periphery of city limits, while Tucson also benefits by getting a larger portion of state-shared revenue. With more than 300,000 people living outside Tucson city limits, that amounts to tens of millions of dollars every year in tax money already paid to the State of Arizona that could be used in our community to help fund police, fire, roads, and parks. Learn how the Empire Vista Neighborhood is benefiting from its recent annexation, in this Tucson 12 video.

MAYOR AND COUNCIL CONDITIONALLY AGREE ON WESTSIDE VISITOR CENTER - As City of Tucson leaders plan to develop nearly 28 acres of vacant land west of downtown, Mayor and Council agreed yesterday to give five acres of that land to Pima County for a future regional visitor's center. However, the projected $15 million visitor center would have to be included in a successful 2015 bond package and satisfy other Council concerns before the City formally turns over any property. The City hopes a bond-funded visitor center will help attract commercial, retail, or residential development to the western edge of the streetcar route, south of Cushing Street, said Nicole Ewing-Gavin, program director for Tucson's Office of Integrated Planning. Even though the Council approved giving up the land, it refused a County request for the City to build a parking garage. Read more from the Arizona Daily Star.

TUCSON POLICE DEPARTMENT TO USE NEW TOOL TO COMMUNICATE WITH NEIGHBORHOODS - The Tucson Police Department (TPD) is partnering with Nextdoor.com, a private social network for neighborhoods to build stronger, safer communities. TPD's integration with Nextdoor will allow police to get messages to individual neighborhoods, which could be helpful in cases where a suspicious person may be targeting a particular neighborhood. TPD says it feels confident this additional form of communication can increase neighborhood safety. More than 114 Tucson neighborhoods already have started a Nextdoor site, representing 50 percent of Tucson's neighborhoods. Police say Nextdoor will not replace neighborhood meetings. Read the TPD news release.
 
AED SCAVENGER HUNT THROUGH THE END OF THE MONTH - There's only one week left in this month's scavenger hunt for automated external defibrillators (AEDs). The Tucson Fire Department (TFD) and the University of Arizona Department of Emergency Medicine are hosting the HeartMap Tucson Challenge, an AED scavenger hunt that aims to raise awareness about AEDs and to a build a comprehensive database of where the devices are located. At last report, TFD said 900 devices had been located in Tucson. Registration for the challenge is open to individuals or teams. Prizes range from $50 to $5,000. AEDs are electronic, briefcase size devices designed to allow bystanders to help someone who collapses during a cardiac arrest prior to the arrival of emergency medical help.
 
ADOPT A PARK TO HELP KEEP PUBLIC AREAS CLEAN - Tucson Clean and Beautiful is seeking community volunteers to adopt parks, streets, washes, and other public areas on an ongoing basis. There are more than 700 sites available for "adoption." Volunteers (at least five in a group) agree to remove litter and debris once a month, while making notes about conditions of the site that require attention by maintenance employees. To become a part of Tucson Clean and Beautiful’s environmental stewardship efforts, or for more information, visit its website. You can also email adoptapark@tucsonaz.gov, or call 791-3109.

Project Updates

AJO WAY - COUNTRY CLUB ROAD TO 14TH AVENUE 
SIXTH STREET - COUNTRY CLUB ROAD TO CAMPBELL AVENUE

Southern Arizona Paving and Construction Co, under contract with the City of Tucson Department of Transportation, has issued a revised milling and paving schedule for two projects - Ajo Way from Country Club Road to 14th Avenue and Sixth Street from Country Club Road to Campbell Avenue.

The revised schedule is as follows:

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