North-South Corridor Study: Proposed New Transportation Route in Pinal County

Tier 1 EIS

You are invited to review the Tier 1 Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and Record of Decision (ROD) for the North-South Corridor Study (Final Tier 1 EIS/ROD).

Because this is a combined EIS/ROD, there is no formal comment period.

Email  Email: [email protected]

Smart PhoneToll-free bilingual information line: 855.712.8530

Mail  Mail: North-South Corridor Team c/o ADOT Communications, 
                 1655 W. Jackson St.,  Mail Drop 126F, Phoenix, AZ 85007

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Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

Pursuant to Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), ADOT does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, sex or disability. Persons who require a reasonable accommodation based on language or disability should contact Courtney King, Community Relations Project Manager, at 480.549.3504 or at [email protected]. Requests should be made as early as possible to ensure the State has an opportunity to address the accommodation.)

De acuerdo con el Título VI de la Ley de Derechos Civiles de 1964, la Ley de Estadounidenses con Discapacidades (ADA por sus siglas en inglés) y otras normas y leyes antidiscriminatorias, el Departamento de Transporte de Arizona (ADOT) no discrimina por motivos de raza, color, origen nacional, sexo, edad o discapacidad. Las personas que requieran asistencia (dentro de lo razonable) ya sea por el idioma o discapacidad deben ponerse en contacto en Courtney King con [email protected] o 855.712.8530. Las solicitudes deben hacerse lo más antes posible para asegurar que el Estado tenga la oportunidad de hacer los arreglos necesarios.

The environmental review, consultation, and other actions required by applicable Federal environmental laws for this project are being, or have been, carried out by ADOT pursuant to 23 U.S.C. 327 and a Memorandum of Understanding dated 04/16/2019, and executed by FHWA and ADOT.)

Las consultas, la revisión ambiental y otras acciones requeridas según las leyes ambientales federales correspondientes para este proyecto se están llevando a cabo, o se han llevado a cabo, por ADOT de acuerdo con 23 U.S.C 327 y un Memorándum de Acuerdo con fecha del 16 de abril de 2019, y se han realizado por FHWA y ADOT.

Reports and documents produced as part of the ongoing North-South Corridor Study can be found here.

The following information is provided as a resource to those interested in the North-South Corridor Study. Files can be large and take time to download to your computer; Adobe Reader may be needed to view these documents.

Final Tier 1 EIS/ROD (August 2021)

Final Tier 1 EIS/ROD (August 2021)
The Tier 1 Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and Record of Decision (ROD) for the North-South Corridor Study (Final Tier 1 EIS/ROD) is now available. Since this is a combined Final EIS/ROD there is no formal comment period.

Public Involvement Summary Report (April 2020)

Public Involvement Summary Report (April 2020)
The Public Involvement Summary Report documents the outreach efforts that the Arizona Department of Transportation took during the environmental review process for the Draft Tier 1 Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the North-South Corridor Study. This report documents the public review and comment period from Sept. 6 through Oct. 29, 2019. Responses to all comments are published within the Final Tier 1 Environmental Impact Statement and may be found in Volume III: Appendix O. Agency and Public Comments.

Draft Tier 1 Environmental Impact Statement (September 2019)

Draft Tier 1 Environmental Impact Statement (Sept. 2019)
On September 6, 2019, the Arizona Department of Transportation released the Draft Tier 1 Environmental Impact Statement (Draft Tier 1 EIS) for the North-South Corridor Study. The Draft Tier 1 EIS compares the Build Corridor Alternatives against a No-Build Alternative (do-nothing option). The Draft Tier 1 EIS considers possible effects that alternatives might have on a variety of social, environmental and economic resources, and evaluates their direct, indirect and cumulative effects on the surrounding environment. The Selected Corridor Alternative may be viewed within the North-South Corridor Study Web Map.

Purpose and Need (December 2018)

Purpose and Need (Dec. 2018)
The Arizona Department of Transportation developed the Purpose and Need document to provide background information on the evolution and planning context of the North–South Corridor. The Purpose and Need defines the purpose of the North–South Corridor and outlines the factors that contribute to the need for a transportation facility within the corridor study area. The Purpose and Need is a fundamental part of the National Environmental Policy Act process and provides the basis for identifying, evaluating and screening corridor alternatives. It is a key component in determining the Selected Corridor Alternative for the North–South Corridor.

Coordination Plan for Agency and Public Involvement (February 2017)

Coordination Plan for Agency and Public Involvement (Feb. 2017)
The Coordination Plan defines the process by which ADOT communicates information about the North–South Corridor Study Tier 1 EIS to the cooperating and participating agencies and to the public. A key focus of the plan is to facilitate an understanding with the public, tribal governments and governmental agencies regarding the study process, key milestones, and decision points.

Revised Notice of Intent (Oct. 2016)

Revised Notice of Intent (Oct. 2016)
The publication of the Notice of Intent (NOI) in the Federal Register represents the official start of the National Environmental Policy Act process. A NOI to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) was originally published in the Federal Register on Sept. 20, 2010. A second NOI was published for the North-South Corridor Study when the study was converted from a project-level EIS to a Tier 1 EIS on Oct. 3, 2016.

Alternative Selection Report (October 2014)

Alternative Selection Report (October 2014) 
As a first step in the study process, the North-South Corridor Study Alternatives Selection Report (ASR) recommends route alternatives to be studied in further detail in the next phase of the study. The criteria used to evaluate alternatives in the ASR included traffic operations; roadway geometry; multimodal options; consistency with regional plans; the human, built, and natural environments; as well as stakeholder support. The report recommended several alternative 1,500-foot wide corridors for evaluation through an Environmental Impact Statement.

Scoping Report (February 2011)

Scoping Report (Feb. 2011)
The Scoping Summary Report documents the scoping process for the North-South Corridor environmental study between Apache Junction (US 60) and Picacho (I-10). The agency scoping meeting for this study occurred on October 5, 2010, and the public scoping meetings occurred October 19, 21, 26, and 28, 2010, in locations throughout the study area. The official scoping comment period ended on November 11, 2010; however, comments received after the comment period were documented and reviewed by the study team. The scoping process is in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act.

Fall 2019 Comment Period and Public Hearings

The North-South Corridor Study Draft Tier 1 Environmental Impact Statement (Draft Tier 1 EIS) was completed and made available for public review and comment from Sept. 6, 2019 through Oct. 29, 2019. All comments and questions received during that period were addressed in the Final Tier 1 Environmental Impact Statement, which was  completed in August 2021.

Although the deadline for comments on the Draft Tier 1 EIS has passed, comments on the ongoing study can be made at any time during the study process. For comment methods, visit the Contact Us page. Fina

 

Alternatives Update (2017)

As the North-South Corridor Study progressed, changes were made to the proposed alternatives subsequent to agency and public outreach and publication of the Alternatives Selection Report. As a result, ADOT, in coordination with the Federal Highway Administration, opened a comment period to solicit input on the new action corridor alternatives.

In the fall of 2017, those modified action corridor alternatives were presented for public review through an online mapping and comment tool, accessed from the study website. During the 30-day comment period (November 14 to December 14, 2017), the online mapping tool allowed users to drop a pin and comment on a specific area, or to provide general comments on the action corridor alternatives. All comments received by December 14, 2017, were considered during preparation of the Corridor Selection Report, which is included in Appendix C, Alternatives Screening, of this Draft Tier 1 Environmental Impact Statement (see Appendix A, Agency and Public Comments, available for review on the Documents  page and at several locations in the study area).

November 2014 Public Meeting

The Arizona Department of Transportation and the Federal Highway Administration hosted a series of public meetings to present the corridor alternatives for the proposed North-South Corridor Study. Information regarding the meetings and what we heard may be found at the linked documents below.

November 2012 Public Meeting

The Tier 1 EIS was completed on August 20, 2021 and includes the following elements:

Tier 1 Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)

The purpose of the North-South Corridor Study Tier 1 Environmental Impact Statement was to identify a selected alternative – either a build corridor alternative or a no-build alternative – for the 55-mile corridor between U.S. 60 on the north and Interstate 10 on the south, as well as a connection to State Route (SR) 24 at Ironwood Drive. 

During the Tier 1 EIS process, ADOT evaluated potential corridor alternatives, along with the no-build alternative, for a future project alignment. The Tier 1 EIS and Record of Decision (ROD) identifies a selected build alternative for the North-South Corridor, as well as a corridor for a future proposed extension of SR 24 from Ironwood Drive to the North-South Corridor.

In 2019, the Tier 1 Draft EIS/ROD was published and made available for public review and comment, with three public hearings held in the study area.

The study team considered all comments received on the Draft Tier 1 EIS, conducted additional analysis, and coordinated with stakeholders to prepare the Final Tier 1 EIS/ROD. All comments received on the DEIS were considered and responded to in the Final Tier 1 EIS document.

The Tier 1 EIS and ROD is a combined document, and the public release of the documents concludes this phase of the study. Since this is a combined EIS and ROD, there is no formal comment period.

The Tier 1 EIS process is prescribed by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The Final Tier 1 EIS provides a Draft Phased Implementation Plan, which is a conceptual framework for how the North-South Corridor will move forward into Tier 2 studies. A Phased Implementation Plan includes smaller segments of a corridor alternative that may advance as separate, independent projects.

Tier 2 EIS studies, for shorter segments of the corridor that may advance as separate, independent projects, may now be completed. These studies would include additional analysis to further refine the selected 1,500-foot North-South corridor to identify a recommended freeway alignment and the location of interchanges, bridges and other design features, and will include opportunities for public review and comment.

ADOT is considering all funding options to move the proposed North-South Corridor through the next phase of the study process and eventually to construction.

North South Corridor Environmental Review Process

Current Status

On August 20, 2021 ADOT published the Tier 1 Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and Record of Decision (ROD) for the North-South Corridor Study (Final Tier 1 EIS/ROD). The Final Tier 1 EIS/ROD is now available on the Documents page.FEIS Selected Alternative Map

The ROD, the final decision-making document prepared by ADOT, represents the final decision on the Tier 1 EIS. Because this is a combined EIS/ROD, there is no formal comment period.

The Final Tier 1 EIS, conducted in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), incorporates changes based on comments received on the Draft Tier 1 EIS, as well as updated analyses based on new information, and identifies a Selected Corridor Alternative for the proposed North-South Corridor.

All public comments and questions received during the Draft Tier 1 EIS comment period are addressed in the Final Tier 1 EIS and can be viewed in Appendix O (link is external).

Overview

The Tier 1 EIS evaluated alternatives to improve regional connectivity, provide an additional connection through a growing area of the Sun Corridor, and address current and future transportation needs in Pinal County. The North-South Corridor spans more than 50 miles between U.S. 60 in Apache Junction and I-10 in Eloy, passing through the city of Coolidge, town of Florence and portions of unincorporated Pinal County along the way. The study also incorporates the proposed extension of State Route 24 from Ironwood Drive to the North-South Corridor. The selected alternative may be viewed within the North-South Corridor Study Web Map (link is external).

A continuous, access-controlled north-to-south transportation corridor would:

  • Improve access to future activity centers
  • Improve regional mobility
  • Improve north-to-south connectivity
  • Integrate the region’s transportation network
  • Address existing and future population and employment growth
  • Provide an alternative to avoid congestion on I-10