KGUN 9 On Your SideNews


Residents upset about SR86/Kinney Road construction

Posted at 5:52 AM, Oct 16, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-16 10:16:07-04

Residents upset over SR86/Kinney Road construction. 

People who live in the West side near  are upset over the State Route 86 and Kinney Road construction project. They are concerned about how long the project is taking and the traffic it's causing in that part of town.

Residents in that part of town argue it's causing headaches for people in that area.

Bob Pillsburry, who lives at the Tucson Estates reached out to KGUN9 and expressed his frustration. He sent us the following email:

"The real reason for writing is about the on-going mess along the Ajo Hwy, SR86.  The I-19/Ajo interchange is open to the south side, but closed on the north side, which causes a lot of traffic flow problems," he wrote. "There are more than 200,000 people living west of the Tucson Mountains, and there are only two main roads to get there from the Tucson area, the main one being Ajo Hwy.  Since they can't go north on I-19 right now, they have to use Mission or La Cholla to get to Starr Pass and enter the freeway there.  This causes the left turn lanes from Ajo Hwy to overload onto the left lane of the 2-lane Ajo Hwy and really slows traffic.  Of course this is mostly only a problem during high traffic periods."

According to Pillsburry, the construction has been going on for several months and keeps getting worse. People who live in the area do not know exactly what is going on and for how much longer, he says. 

He and many other people who live nearby are calling it the "forgotten project." They believe ADOT does not pay much attention to it, simply because it's far away from town. Pillsburry believes it should not be the case, "they stay in town, but we have several hundred people living here and most of them go on this highway to get there and traffic is humongous out here."

Due to the ongoing construction, it is now  a struggle to get on Ajo and head to town, especially during rush hour, he added. 

Pillsburry and many people we spoke with who live in the west side believe the improvement is needed and appreciated, but the problem is they don't know what exactly is going on. 

Meanwhile, ADOT spokesperson, Tom Herrmann says they have worked with the community going back five to six years before they even started working on this project to try and explain the process.

The construction is a two-year large project, which is on schedule, Herrmann explained. 

ADOT expects it to be completed in six months. When finished, Ajo Way/ SR 86 will be widened, and side streets that feed into it will also be improved.