Scottsdale residents, you are about to get ‘railroaded.’ Light rail is coming and there’s nothing you can do about it…except pay attention to the folks for whom you vote for city council in about 18 months.

This email from Councilman Bob Littlefield pretty much says it all.

One of the unfortunate consequences of the results of last year’s city elections is that the push to run light rail up Scottsdale Road is now running full speed ahead. Two things have happened you need to know about:

1. At the May 7th City Council meeting Jim Derouin submitted a petition asking the Council to “initiate a dialogue to examine the feasibility of high capacity transportation and available options” (copy attached). I phoned Jim and he said he submitted the petition at the request of Virginia Korte and that he did so because he agrees with Virginia that Scottsdale “needs to have the conversation about light rail,” which was one of Virginia’s talking points during the campaign. I pointed out to Jim that this will not be a conversation but rather a taxpayer-funded sales job for light rail. Jim said he was told that they might run light rail up the 101 but I pointed out that Scottsdale Road remains (despite my opposition) the designated high capacity transportation corridor in Scottsdale, the Loop 101 “option” has always been a dodge to distract people. Unsurprisingly the Council voted 5-2 to agendize this “conversation” so we will see that on the Council agenda in the not too distant future.

2. Our Transit staff and Valley Metro will be bringing to the City Council later this year a proposal to implement Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) service from Greenway (Scottsdale Quarter) south to the University station at Tempe. Of course, BRT is “light rail light,” more proof that the end goal is to run light rail up Scottsdale Road.

Around here the fun never ends!

Councilman Bob Littlefield
602-228-9145 (mobile)



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  1. About six years ago I attended a debate at the Granite Reef Senior Center between Bob and Rick Kidder over light rail. Bob wiped him out to a packed house of joyous cheers.

    I’m sure the feeling of dislike is still rampant against this debacle of light rail. It’s a money loser, it’s dangerous, and most of all no one will ride it.

    Scottsdale is an upper class community and I can assure the city council (except for Bob and probably Guy who have their heads on straight about this folly) that yuppies like “Biff and Buffy” are not going to ride some crummy streetcar in lieu of their Bentley from their 5,000 square foot digs in north Scottsdale down to Dominick’s to eat their $400 meal.

    It’s the clueless fools from south Scottsdale and guys like Rick Kidder who dream up these expensive silly notions. It’s an idea that must be stamped out again.

  2. John,

    One last thing about light rail. Here is a blog I did at AZ Central in December of 2005. I didn’t know this was still in my archives. Some things never change!

    Wednesday, December 14, 2005

    Light rail is nothing but a modern streetcar. Phoenix used to have those but disbanded them about 50 years ago for gasoline buses. They do need some type of public transportation and if they want to waste their money on light rail that’s up to them.

    As far as Scottsdale, I’m proud of the city council for shelving the idea. Of course, the idealists disagree. They think that the citizens of Scottsdale will actually ride light rail. Yeah, just like they ride the buses in Scottsdale, one at a time and that’s the driver by himself. Do they really think that people who live in Troon or Desert Highlands are going to inconvenience themselves to save a couple bucks on gas and help the environment? The people who believe that are sadly lacking in knowledge of human nature. Remember, this is the place where people sit parked in their idling $50,000, 8 miles to the gallon air conditioned SUV’s, burning $3 per gallon gas and talking on their cell phones. They are not going to ride a streetcar and at a $54 million installation cost per mile plus subsidies this would be a folly of utmost proportions.

    Yes, Scottsdale is wonderful but some of us are spoiled with our great lifestyle. Maybe we need to stop a moment and smell our Starbuck’s coffee.

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