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Valley Metro's Tempe Streetcar project gets environmental clearance

The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has found no significant environmental impacts related to the proposed 3-mile streetcar route in Tempe, Ariz.

The finding means that Valley Metro, the local transit agency overseeing the project, can continue to compete for federal dollars for the streetcar line, said Tempe Mayor and Valley Metro Rail Vice Chair Mark Mitchell in a press release.

"With this environmental clearance, we are one step closer to providing another option for the growing number of Tempe residents, students and workers who rely on public transit every day,” Mitchell said.

The streetcar is slated to make a loop through downtown Tempe on its 3-mile journey.

Valley Metro officials anticipate kicking off construction in 2017 and finishing by 2019.

At present, the agency and the city are waiting to hear from the FTA in early 2016 about an application submitted to receive funding through the Small Starts grant program, Valley Metro officials said.

Map of proposed Tempe Streetcar route
Source: Valley Metro

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More News from 11/24/2015