Making the most of Downtown Marana

Tonight’s Town Council meeting includes a proposal to realign future roadways in North Marana that would increase safety and stay consistent with the Town’s vision for economic development and a vibrant downtown in the Northwest area.

The first step toward an improved transportation network is to address the current traffic congestion at the intersection of Marana and Sandario roads. Marana Road, west of the intersection, needs to be relocated to a safe distance from the ADOT freeway ramps and frontage road. The relocation of Marana Road will help provide a safer environment for those who travel through the busy and expanding Main Street and future downtown area.

The long-term plan would extend Tangerine Farms Road from Clark Farms Boulevard to the Marana Road/I-10 exit. The planned loop road will extend the 3.8 mile road that is already built, and align with the I-10 interchange, thus creating a functional loop road system.

While several options for the road alignment have been studied over the past decade, Tangerine Farms Road provides the most balanced approach for circulating traffic in the Northwest area. Tangerine Farms Road provides the most efficient roadway access to the I-10 freeway for traffic generated by all of the planned developments and amenities in the Northwest area, including the Uptown, Marana Mercantile, Marana Towne Center, Marana Main Street, Marana Heritage River Park, a new Marana high school and a performing arts center.

Other streets intersecting Tangerine Farms Road will not only provide better and safer distribution of traffic, but also improve access to the larger Northwest Area, including locally owned businesses along Sandario Road.

The Town is committed to creating roadways that encourage the creation and retention of successful businesses. While the future Tangerine Farms Road alignment will not be constructed for several years, the Town must move forward with a plan that increases safety and satisfies the needs of the largest number of new and existing businesses.

The realignment of current and future roads requires a minor amendment to the Town’s General Plan. Town Council will hold a public hearing to discuss this and other roadway changes at a special meeting starting at 6 p.m. in Council Chambers at the Marana Municipal Complex (11555 W. Civic Center Dr.).