Over the next 20 years, Arizona expects the metro Phoenix region to expand by 1.8 million people, accounting for 83% of all population growth statewide. Such rapid growth presents a challenge for state officials: how to efficiently, sustainably and cost-effectively accommodate rising travel demand within the Phoenix metropolitan area.
Research by the U.S. Department of Transportation shows that 73% of all vehicle trips are under 9 miles (The average commute is 12.7 miles). Yet the state is proposing to spend more than $7 billion to build a roughly 280-mile interstate highway designed for long-distance, interregional travel.
The above excerpt was originally published in The Arizona Republic.
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