Over the last couple of years, the City of Tempe has been working on a streetscape design for 5th Street between Farmer and College avenues, with considerable public involvement throughout the process. Following input from the Tempe City Council in January, project design was advanced to the 60% level and is currently being reviewed by city staff and stakeholders; the project is on target to have completed construction plans by October 2018.
Along with several other city projects, construction of the 5th Street Streetscape has been delayed in order to maintain capital improvement expenditures within the City of Tempe’s bonding authority. While construction of the overall streetscape has been deferred, the ‘Tempe Green’ segment of the project is anticipated to advance to construction independently. This segment includes installation of public restrooms and a public space adjacent to Tempe City Hall. Future construction of the remainder of the project will be coordinated with existing and incoming developments to incorporate the planned improvements – ultimately creating an accessible, iconic and sustainable street for all modes of travel and users.
A test of the project elements was conducted that propose changes to the current vehicular lane configuration, as follows:
- Test period: Sept. 5-18, 2017 - Online comment was available Sept. 5 to Sept. 25, 2017
- Test configuration:
- Elimination of right turn lane from eastbound Fifth Street to southbound Mill Avenue (southwest corner Mill & Fifth in front of post office)
- Elimination of center turn lane in various sections between Ash and College avenues
- Analysis/data: Transportation staff observed and recorded the simulated impact on traffic/behavior during peak periods, including turn movements and vehicle back-up, which were compared with existing traffic volumes and traffic, transit, bicycle and pedestrian performance. This data was used to modify proposed design treatments.
At the April 6, 2017 City Council Issue Review Session, the Council supported the general concept to advance more detailed documents, but also provided additional project feedback. That feedback included the following, which will be reported back to Council at the Nov. 1, 2017 Issue Review Session:
- Test possible lane closures and median changes
- Explore solar structures or pavement in areas near City Hall
- Consider edible landscape plaza space near City Hall and Sixth Street Park, possibly adopted by ASU program or a non-profit as a learning/educational element of the project
- Palms at Mill and Fifth may not match/be appropriate next to the Mill Avenue Ficus trees
- Explore transit stop on north side of Fifth Street east of Farmer; if it can be separated from bike lane explore consolidation of transit stop at Farmer and another at Ash (north side of Fifth)
- Explore possible buffered bike lanes at intersections (no candlesticks)
- A public meeting was held on April 4, 2017 and online public comment was available from March 22 to April 10, 2017. View the comments here.
- View the Fifth Street Project Status and Draft Concepts PowerPoint - March 2017
- View the PowerPoint presentation about this project. A public open house was held Oct. 19, 2016. The online comment form was available from Oct. 19 to Nov. 2., 2016. View the comments.
- View the ASU Sustainability Presentation from November 2016.
- Design: $350,000 DTA Parking Fund.
- Construction: $2.5 million Capital Improvement Plan (pending Council approval); $500,000 Highway User Revenue Funds & $2 million Transit Tax.
Design Team: The design and engineering team for this project was selected after a competitive Request For Qualifications process and round of interviews. The design team, collectively, has worked in the region for decades and has worked more recently on Sixth Street Park and the Farmer Avenue street and path improvements south of Fifth Street.
Construction is scheduled to to begin in January 2019.
For more information contact the project manager, Tony Belleau at 480-858-2071.