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When New Developments And An Increase In Traffic Collide

Phoenix is the sixth largest city in the U.S. and we have the traffic to prove it. With more commercial and housing developments coming on line, the city has to try and strike a balance.

We can’t continue to compare our traffic conditions to what they were 15 years ago. That’s what Alan Stephenson, the city’s planning and development director, said about traffic in 2016. Also, Stephenson said, the city can’t always curb new development, like what’s popping up around 20 th Street and Camelback Road. 

"When I talked about things like the intensity in that area, and being a secondary village core, that was actually voted on and approved a number of years ago, so the city can’t say no to people exercising their property rights to build that intensity," Stephenson explained.

What it can do, said Stephenson, is require a traffic impact assessment or study to determine how much traffic it could trigger. From there, the city looks for ways to curb any possible congestion. 

KJZZ senior field correspondent Kathy Ritchie has 20 years of experience reporting and writing stories for national and local media outlets — nearly a decade of it has been spent in public media.