Arizona's 2nd I-10 expansion plan hits a funding snag

By Jill Ryan
Howard Fischer/Capitol Media Services
Published: Friday, January 13, 2023 - 6:05pm
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Some legislators want to widen a second section of the Interstate 10 between Phoenix and Tucson to create a smoother ride. But Arizona was rejected from getting federal funding.

Senate Republican T.J. Shope plans to write legislation to help foot a $360 million bill to fund the project. The legislation, Shope says, would have an added stipulation that the state funding would stop if federal money was acquired.

Arizona's first bid for a share of the National Infrastructure Project Assistance was rejected. The reason remains unclear, and an aide to Sen. Mark Kelly says they’re awaiting feedback. Casa Grande's Mayor Craig McFarland says it’s “pretty normal" for applicants not to get federal grants the first time they ask.

“I think we'll learn from the first one. And hopefully we'll get some feedback from the feds as to what we may have not done right in the first application," McFarland said.

Even if the expansion is funded, Shope says it’s only a start. He points out there will be a lot of cross traffic because of Casa Grande’s Lucid Motors and Nikola’s expansion into Coolidge. 

Alternative modes of travel, like trains, won't be of help any time soon either. Amtrak plans to connect multiple Arizona cities, but for now that project is still being studied. 

Politics Transportation