Communities near Phoenix Sky Harbor to get makeover with Cultural Corridor project

Jun 25, 2023, 2:00 PM | Updated: 3:28 pm

Stock photo of airplanes lining up at Sky Harbor Airport as travelers prepare for Memorial Day comm...

(Sky Harbor International Airport Photo)

(Sky Harbor International Airport Photo)

PHOENIX — The City of Phoenix Aviation Department received a $10 million grant from the federal government to create a “Cultural Corridor.”

The funding is from the Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity grant which will reconnect disadvantaged and underserved communities adjacent to Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport with downtown Phoenix, the city said in a press release.

RAISE grants are a discretionary grant program that funds surface transportation and infrastructure projects like the PHX Cultural Corridor.

The Cultural Corridor is bounded by 7th Street on the west, 16th Street and Sky Harbor Circle on the east, Union Pacific Railroad north, and I-17 south. It will include the historic Central City South/Nuestro Barrio neighborhoods of El Campito, Cuatro Milpas, Ann Ott, Green Valley and San Juan Batista.

Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego said it is exciting for the neighborhoods to receive this kind of recognition.

“This grant will enable us to honor the legacies, histories and identities of existing communities while also improving safety and mobility in the region. I represented this district for many years as a councilwoman and know firsthand that this project will have an immediate, positive impact once complete,” Gallego said in the press release.

The main goals of the Cultural Corridor project are stabilizing and strengthening neighborhoods, creating a sense of identity and changing perceptions and expanding economic opportunity, the release said.

The corridor will add ADA-compliant sidewalks, streetlights and protected bike lanes. Also, wayfinding elements and historic building and site markers will be deployed along with the construction of bus shelters, re-establishing utility connections and installation of public art, according to the city.

“Sky Harbor’s success should be a point of pride for all Phoenicians — but for many in the surrounding area, the airport’s growth has separated them from their neighbors and from economic opportunity,” Rep. Greg Stanton said. “We’re putting Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funds to work to reconnect and revitalize these communities, while honoring their history.”

District 8 Councilwoman Kesha Hodge Washington said the grant provides an opportunity to make significant improvements in the area.

“Our residents were clear that they wanted to return vacant lots to productive use so that we can create a vibrant live-work environment and they wanted to celebrate the rich history of our community; this grant will allow us to respond to those requests,” she said.

“I also want to thank Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg, Congressman Greg Stanton, Congressman Ruben Gallego and Senators Mark Kelly and Kyrsten Sinema for their work on behalf of my constituents.”

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Communities near Phoenix Sky Harbor to get makeover with Cultural Corridor project