ICYMI: Stanton Announces $15.9 Million Federal Grant to Advance Rio East-Dobson Streetcar Extension

June 25, 2024 at 11:48 am

Today Rep. Greg Stanton announced Valley Metro would receive a $15,939,835 federal Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) grant, funded under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, to advance the Rio East-Dobson Streetcar Extension (REDE).

The REDE project will expand the existing 3-mile Valley Metro Streetcar by an additional 4.35 miles, and extend it from Tempe into Mesa. RAISE grant funds will be used to complete design and environmental work for the project.

"This initial investment is recognition of the Streetcar's potential to boost economic development in Mesa, just as it has in Tempe,"Stantonsaid. He pressed the importance of the project ina letterto Department of Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg in February of this year.

Leaders from Mesa, Tempe and Valley Metro praised the grant award announcement.

"This RAISE grant is a transformative investment in our community's future, readying the area for anticipated population growth and increased employment,"Mesa Mayor John Gilessaid. "The Rio East-Dobson Streetcar Extension will not only enhance connectivity between Tempe and Mesa but also provide vital high-capacity transit options for historically underserved areas. I am deeply grateful to Congressman Stanton for his efforts to advance transportation infrastructure for our region."

"We know there is a demand for an efficient transportation network that connects West Mesa residents to education, jobs and economic centers within our City and the region. The Rio-East Dobson Street Car Extension will boost transportation options, reduce traffic congestion, improve air quality and elevate the overall quality of life. The RAISE grant is a critical investment to move this project forward. I am thankful to Congressman Stanton for his commitment to positively impacting our East Valley public transit network. I look forward to working with stakeholders and the community to help make this project a reality,"Mesa Vice Mayor Francisco Heredia, Incoming Chair of Valley Metro Rail, said.

"The extension of the streetcar from Tempe to Mesa is critical to our local economy, residents, and our environment,"Tempe Vice Mayor Jennifer Adamssaid. "Residents of both cities will soon have more options to get to work, take their children to school, or enjoy a spring training game in another city. Additionally, expanded public transportation opportunities will help meet our environmental sustainability goals and ease traffic congestion. We thank Representative Stanton and Senators Kelly and Sinema for their efforts to secure crucial funding to improve our infrastructure, meet our community's needs, and to set us on course for a more prosperous future." Adams currently sits on the Board of Directors for Valley Metro, where she serves as the Vice Chair of the Valley Metro RPTA Board and is a member of the Audit Finance Subcommittee.

"Valley Metro, in partnership with the cities of Tempe and Mesa and our federal elected leadership, is thrilled to continue to have the USDOT at our side as we expand streetcar into the East Valley with the 2024 RAISE grant,"Jessica Mefford-Miller, CEO of Valley Metro, said. "The nearly $16 million award will help advance the Rio East-Dobson Streetcar Extension into engineering as we seek to add travel options, create safer streets, and improve air quality and connectivity in a corridor rich with diverse neighborhoods, activity centers and extensive growth."