PHOENIX – As of Monday, April 8, those traveling between Metro light rail and Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport can catch a free, air-conditioned ride aboard PHX Sky Train.
The first phase of the $1.6 billion project connects with Terminal 4 and includes a stop at the East Economy parking lot. The driverless cars, leaving about every three minutes, will make the trip in about half the time of the current shuttle buses.
“The Sky Train is going to serve the airport really well to move passengers really efficiently from point to point,” Steve Grubbs, a Phoenix Aviation Department special projects administrator, said during a media tour Thursday.
The trains will reduce congestion from the 108 buses that currently transport passengers around the airport, he said, while the station connecting with light rail emphasizes convenience and incorporates sustainable features and public artwork.
US Airways and Southwest Airlines will offer free early bag checking at the light-rail and East Economy stations in a pilot program. Passengers will also be able to print boarding passes at kiosks from participating airlines.
Grubbs said the PHX Sky Train was designed to create flexibility for future expansions and modifications.
Julie Rodriguez, spokeswoman for the airport, said a bridge that crosses 100 feet over a taxiway, enough to clear the tallest jetliners, will enhance the experience.
“It should be a really great ride for passengers,” she said.
Officials plan to extend the train to Terminal 3, with a walkway to Terminal 2, by 2015.
The light-rail station’s public art features mosaic-like designs in the flooring and a vibrant blue ceiling structure outside, paid for by a required 1 percent allocation in the budget.
Rebecca Blume Rothman, public arts project manager for the Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture, said this was the first foray into public art for most of the seven artists whose work is displayed at the stations.
Their mission is to enhance infrastructure, not merely decorate it, she said.
“Something that our program strived for is to use public art as a means to create landmarks in the city fabric,” Rothman said.
- Sunscreen facts that could save your life
- 6 energy saving hacks for your home
- 5 tips for choosing a company to end your timeshare
- Water tips to save money, help save the Earth
- 5 of the most adored gentlemen in professional sports today
- The real danger of sitting at your desk
- Most surprising NBA playoff performances of the last 40 years
- 11 classic baseball movies you must see again
- Finally getting rid of fat: 3 methods that actually work
- 4 reasons cancer survivors should focus on food
- 5 spring cleaning spots everyone forgets
- 5 reasons to look forward to watching the D-backs this season
- Common virus attributed to spike in head and neck cancers
- 5 signs it’s time to end your timeshare ownership
- 3 most overlooked ways to keep your home healthy
- 6 ways the air in your home could be making you sick
- CrossFit dangers: 5 common injuries and how to deal with them
- Today's radiation treatments offer better success, fewer side effects
- Tips to make watching TV on the patio even better
- What really happens when you donate to a community college?
- Sun and skin cancer: Separating fact from fiction
- 5 critical lifestyle changes for a healthy colon
- What you need to know about Alzheimer's disease in Arizona
- Spring clean your windows like a pro with these 8 tips
- 7 films that should have won best-picture Oscars
- New plumbing technology saves money and improves your home
- Survey shows Arizona CFOs optimistic about 2016
- How chronic pain can affect your love life
- 5 potential warning signs about your child's development