Traveling freely, safely, affordably and easily is what makes Arizona a great place to live. But as we continue to grow, we put our state’s quality of life and air at risk. Since that is an outcome we cannot afford, we look to innovation as our solution—to alternative modes of transportation, the widespread adoption of zero-/low-emission vehicles and policy changes that protect air quality, improve public health and expand economic opportunities for Arizona.
Greater accessibility through bus and light rail systems
Vanpools and carpools made possible with an extensive HOV network
Human-powered transport, including walking, biking and micro-mobility
Statewide adoption of electric vehicles for personal, business and municipal use
Achieving mobility solutions
for better transportation and cleaner air
Transportation is now America’s number one source of carbon pollution, with greenhouse gas emissions from cars, trucks, buses, airplanes, trains and other vehicles surpassing every other source. This is particularly true for Arizona as it continues to grow and prosper, resulting in more cars on the road and pollutants in the air.
We are at the early stage of our state’s mobility transformation. Some solutions are in progress, while others are being planned. Since adoption relies on a shift in behavior, we need to build consensus with metro and rural areas and provide community outreach to educate the public about the benefits of current and future alternative mobility solutions.
Public Transit Solutions Underway
championed by Arizona Forward
In development Similar to light rail and faster than regular bus service, BRT is a clean mobility option that will improve transit speed
City of Phoenix Complete Streets
Policy adopted Requires Phoenix streets to be planned, designed, operated and maintained to allow transportation access for users of all ages and abilities
Phoenix METRO Light Rail
Opened 2008; Expansion planned
Reduces congestion and pollution by providing an alternative mobility option to a wide array of commuters
Completed 2014 Electric rail system and ADA-compliant streetcars stop at 23 points in downtown Tucson—moving about 950,000 people per year
Arizona’s mobility transformation, still in the early adoption stage, faces many challenges:
- Lack of charging station networks for electric vehicles
- Lack of public awareness about the benefits of using alternative mobility options
- Low priority social equity measures in transportation planning
- Rural community buy-in on future solutions
- Lack of funding for cities and towns to implement cleaner options
- Limited funding for light rail extensions due to budget and tax revenue constraints
- Lack of policies to accelerate alternative mobility options
Achieving better transportation systems and cleaner air requires education, technology advancements and transportation policies and planning changes.
It all depends on a concerted effort to work toward the greater good through solutions and their widespread adoption.
This viable solution is estimated to provide significant benefits to the environment and the economy: by 2050, projections show EVs will annually reduce nitrogen oxide emissions by 2,900 tons, CO2 emissions by 26 million tons, resulting in $220 million in compliance costs and $1.3 billion in avoided damages
Autonomous Vehicles (AVs)
Statewide information townhalls in 2018/2019 helped prepare for future planning
It is expected that widespread adoption will occur over the next several decades—with electric AVs operating as ride-share options, resulting in fewer vehicles on the road and freeing up land-use needs for parking lots and structures
Arizona Forward’s Role
Leveraging Mobility & Clean Air Solutions
Our current efforts include exploring ways to expand electric vehicle adoption in Arizona and encouraging the widespread adoption of electric vehicle use at the business level. We believe that the action we take today will secure success in the future—just like our past efforts.
Our Actions currently underway in the following sectors:
- Arizona Business: Encouraging workplace charging, charging for customers and transitioning fleets to electric; support employee-based incentive programs such as free charging at work
- City & Rural: Supporting communities as they plan a long-term strategy for expanding into new transportation modes and use their governance to transition to electric fleets
- Legislative: Advocating for policies to be put into law to enable greater adoption of mobility options, infrastructure and transportation electrification across Arizona
- Transit Agency: Supporting opportunities to electrify public vehicle fleets and buses
- Utility: Building consensus with utilities to implement managed charging programs to take advantage of extra electrical load and stored energy in electric vehicle batteries
- Public Sector: Helping school districts transition to electric school buses
Help make our state a better, healthier system for getting around.
LINKS TO ORGANIZATIONS
- 2020 American Lung Association State of the Air Report – Arizona
- APS Electric Vehicles
- Arizona Commerce Authority – AVs
- AZ MAG Interactive Bike Map
- Center for the Future of Arizona: Infrastructure Progress Meter
- Honeywell Sustainability
- Shared-Use Mobility Center (SUMC)
- Southwest Energy Efficiency Project (SWEEP): Transportation
- SRP Electric Vehicles
- Valley Metro Light Rail
- Valley Metro Rideshare