Airpark Circulation Study
The Scottsdale Airpark is the preeminent employment center in Scottsdale and the third largest in the Phoenix metro area after Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport and Downtown Phoenix. Access to and around the Airpark Area was listed as a critical component in the City of Scottsdale Transportation Master Plan (TMP), which was adopted by City Council in 2008.
Because of the alignment of the airport runway, the Central Arizona Project canal (CAP), the Loop 101 freeway and existing neighborhoods, the typical street grid pattern in this area is not continuous. This creates additional turning movements for traffic and adds confusion for both residents and visitors.
In 2009, the Transportation Department began to identify, analyze and evaluate options to improve and address traffic concerns around the Scottsdale Airpark area. The purpose of this study was to improve access and traffic flow in the Scottsdale Airpark Area.
As part of the process, significant public outreach was conducted including numerous meetings with local businesses, presentations to the Transportation Commission, Planning Commission, Airport Advisory Commission, Mayor’s Breakfast, Airpark trade show and the Airpark Chamber of Commerce. A general Open House was also held in June of 2010.
National studies have indicated the use of roundabouts at certain intersections can reduce the number and severity of collisions due to fewer vehicle conflict points. (See illustration)
To learn more about roundabouts from a national perspective, watch a video from independent Traffic Engineer Scott Ritchie.
To see the most recent presentation given to the Scottsdale Transportation Commission by Senior Traffic Engineer George Williams click here.
Phase One of the Airpark Circulation Plan focuses primarily on the area south of the CAP canal, and east of the airport runway, with four main focus areas (see map):
1. Northsight Extension Project is planned to relieve one of the most congested intersections in Scottsdale – Hayden Road and Frank Lloyd Wright Boulevard. To alleviate the congestion, Northsight Boulevard would be extended from Hayden Road to Frank Lloyd Wright Boulevard creating an alternative to bypass this intersection. The city’s first modern arterial roundabout would be included in the project. Compared to other options, this created less disruption to existing buildings and businesses, improved safety, lessesened conflicts with pedestrian traffic, enhanced sight distance, provided a crossing for Frank Lloyd Wright Boulevard and would be the least expensive to construct (see map).
If approved, the design would be scheduled for completion by spring 2012, with possible construction beginning in summer 2012.
2. Raintree Extension option allows direct connection from the Loop 101 Freeway at the Raintree Drive interchange to the Scottsdale and Thunderbird roads intersection around the south end of the runway. This extension utilizes existing right of way which minimizes costs to the city and disruption to local businesses and residents. To improve capacity and safety, three intersections are being considered for redesign as roundabouts which could potentially replace four traffic signals (see map).
3. Raintree Interchange Alternatives several concepts are being developed to help reduce congestion at the Raintree Drive and 101 Freeway interchange. The goal will be to provide direct access to and from the shopping center using the 101 frontage road to bypass the congestion on Raintree Drive.
4. North Runway Frontage Road would provide alternative access to Frank Lloyd Wright Boulevard at the north end of the runway. The Transportation Commission recommended re-evaluating this project after the completion of the Raintree Drive and Northsight Boulevard extension projects.
Additional improvements to the north and west side of the runway will be studied once Phase One is completed.
Funding for these projects is included in the Regional Transportation Plan and is reimbursable up to 70 percent from Proposition 400 funds through the Maricopa Association of Governments.
We want to hear from you!
Comments on this project are always welcome. Please send comments to: AirparkCirculation@ScottsdaleAz.gov
Airpark Circulation Comments
7575 E Indian School Road, Suite 205
Scottsdale, AZ 85251