ARIZONA NEWS

President Joe Biden arrives in Arizona, will honor John McCain in Tempe, road closures expected

Sep 27, 2023, 8:09 PM | Updated: Sep 28, 2023, 6:20 pm

PHOENIX — President Joe Biden arrived Wednesday night in the Valley where he will honor the late Senator John McCain Thursday in Tempe. 

The president landed just after 8 p.m. at Sky Harbor International Airport.

Due to the president’s Arizona visit, some park areas and roads around the Tempe Town Lake area will be temporarily impacted on Thursday. In addition, a small portion of Tempe Town Lake will be partially closed. Downtown Phoenix will also have road and rail line closures. 

Tempe Town Lake closed at 1 p.m. on Wednesday and will reopen on Thursday afternoon. Boating activities west of the railroad bridge closed and a temporary buoy line was put in place.

Biden will give remarks on strengthening democracy and honoring former Senator McCain just before noon at the Tempe Center for The Arts. After the remarks, Biden will go to a campaign reception event around 2 p.m. in Phoenix.

The president previously traveled to the Grand Canyon State in August to give remarks in north Arizona about the creation of a national monument on land surrounding the Grand Canyon.

Tempe street closures

Several streets will have intermittent closures on Thursday, according to the city of Tempe.

Rio Salado Parkway will be closed in both directions between the Ash Avenue roundabout and Hardy Drive from 8 a.m. through the afternoon on Thursday. Drivers can use University Drive for east/west travel, the city said.

From 10 a.m. through the afternoon, Rio Salado Parkway will be closed in both directions between Hardy and Preist drives. Drivers impacted during this time can also use University Drive for east/west travel.

Priest Drive will also be closed in both directions between Washington Street and University Drive. Drivers can use University Drive to 52nd Street to access properties west of the Priest Drive/Rio Salado Parkway intersection.

Multi-use path closures

Intermittent closures will happen at the Tempe Town Lake Elmore Pedestrian Bridge from 8 a.m. through the afternoon on Thursday.

The Tempe Town Lake South Bank Path will be closed from Priest Drive to the railroad bridge. Cyclist will be rerouted to the north bank at Priest Drive and Mill Avenue.

Tempe Town Lake North Bank Path will remain open, the city said.

Phoenix street closures

The following streets are closed in Phoenix and will remain closed until the president leaves Arizona at 3 p.m.

  • Washington Street between 1st Street and 3rd Avenue.
  • 2nd Street between Washington Street and Jefferson Avenue.
  • Adams Street between 2nd Street and First Avenue.
  • 1st Street between Washington and Van Buren streets.
  • Monroe Street between 2nd Street and Central Avenue.
  • Central Avenue between Washington and Van Buren Streets.

Valley Metro closures

Light rail stations will temporarily be closed until 3 p.m. in Downtown Phoenix, according to Valley Metro.

Westbound stations downtown closed Wednesday afternoon. The stations include 3rd St/Washington, Washington/Central Ave and Van Buren/Central Ave.

Riders boarding westbound trains should use 3rd St/Jefferson, Jefferson/1st Ave and Van Buren/1st Ave.

Any rider at Roosevelt/Central Ave can use 1st Ave. to board trains.

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President Joe Biden arrives in Arizona, will honor John McCain in Tempe, road closures expected