Get ready for lots of food, entertainment and culture in Downtown Tucson this weekend at Tucson Meet Yourself. The annual celebration recognizes traditional arts of Southern Arizona and Northern Mexico and their diverse ethnic and folk communities. The three-day event begins tomorrow at 11 a.m., featuring hundreds of artisans, home cooks, dancers, musicians, and special exhibits that celebrate diversity.
Catch the University of Arizona spirit tomorrow (and every Friday before home football games), when Main Gate Square hosts Bear Down Friday from 5-7 p.m. A pep rally begins at 6 p.m. and features the Pride of Arizona marching band, Wilbur and Wilma, UA cheerleaders, the pom squad, and twirlers. Various UA coaches make guest appearances at each pep rally.
Tucson's tallest building could get a twin. Known simply by its address, One South Church, the building has had several names and owners since it was first built in 1986 as the United Bank Tower and ended its naming run in 2011 as the Unisource Energy Tower.
Now, the building is locally-owned, and the developers want to renovate the current structure and build a second tower on an adjacent, vacant lot. Developers say the residential tower could be as tall as 330 feet.
Recognizing the value of local neon signs, the City's Historic Preservation Office has allocated $125,000 to restore some of these iconic landmarks.
To be eligible for the program, owners of blighted signs apply for Historic Landmark Sign designation, agree to keep the sign up for at least 10 years and pay 25 percent of repair costs. The Hacienda Motel (two signs), Riviera Motor Lodge, and Casa Linda Motel signs currently are being restored under the program.
Downtown Tucson will be the host of several exciting events this weekend. Below is a list of the major events and associated motor vehicle travel restrictions. Please note that pedestrian and bicycle access is being maintained in and around road closures. Businesses, parking garages and parking lots are open and accessible. There are over 15,000 available parking spaces in the Downtown Tucson.
Some of these events will require the closure of downtown streets; however, every effort has been made to coordinate timing to provide optimum access to downtown.
Tucson City Manager Michael Ortega wants City employees to be actively involved in trimming the municipal budget. He'll ask the Tucson City Council tomorrow to consider two employee incentive programs. One would allow a worker to receive a bonus of 1 percent of an implemented idea that saves at least $2,500. The other program would give all City employees a bonus if a Mayor and Council-set citywide performance goal is met.
The Tucson Parks and Recreation department will hold one more community-wide open house tonight to gather public input on how it can best deliver recreation and leisure opportunities.
The draft five-year master plan anticipates future needs and outlines the actions necessary to deliver high-quality recreation facilities, programs, and services to the Tucson area.
If you'd like to track the streetcar and you have a smartphone, you're in luck. The Tucson Streetcar Tracker, developed by Dallan Porter at the University of Arizona, is useful if you want to figure out how long it will take for the streetcar to show up at the stop where you're waiting. The app was developed using open data provided by Sun Link. The free tracker is available for iOS and Android.
Tucson City Manager Michael Ortega is changing the way the City has been paying into Arizona's underfunded Public Safety Personnel Retirement System (PSPRS) for police and fire pensions. In an effort to save on interest payments, the City will pay about $40 million of its $54 million pension bill upfront, instead of making a smaller payment every two weeks. The money will come from the City's cash flow and reserves, which will be replenished over the year, Ortega said.
Several streets will undergo pavement preservation beginning tomorrow and Thursday, as part of the five-year, $100 million Road Recovery bond program that City voters approved in 2012.
Fog Sealing is the application of a thin layer of asphalt emulsion that helps cover small roadway imperfections, cracks, or other small voids and seals the existing asphalt to preserve the roadway.
A new intersection in Tucson improves traffic flow, while providing access for cyclists and pedestrians. The Kino Parkway - 22nd Street Improvement Project is an elevated parkway that includes bike lanes, six-foot-wide sidewalks, and a landscaped median separating two traffic lanes in each direction. Underneath it, 22nd Street was widened to three lanes in each direction, featuring exclusive right turn lanes and dual left turn lanes to access on-ramps.