After many years of pleading, begging, submitting Op-Eds and persuading newspapers to write stories about the pitiful pedestrian conditions on the north side of Camelback Road, we finally have a beautiful new contiguous pedestrian friendly, walkable, rollable sidewalk north of Camelback Road from Scottsdale Road to Miller Road. Additionally, we even have the signaled pedestrian crosswalk that will undoubtedly save lives. I would like to give special thanks to Jim Thompson, city manager, Brent Stockwell, assistant city manager, Dan Worth, executive director public works, and everyone else at the City of Scottsdale who helped us move this project forward, including the property owners who played a significant role.
As downtown Scottsdale grows, it is critical that we continue to provide the infrastructure needed for walkable, rollable pedestrian transportation. This includes the pedestrian bridge over the canal north of Camelback Road that was promised so pedestrian traffic does not have to travel along a dangerous busy road to get to Fashion Square and other destinations. This was part of the development agreement for the gigantic apartment complex being built on North 73rd Street and should not be pushed back or delayed.
The final component to manage westbound traffic turning north on Scottsdale Road would be a dedicated right turn lane on Camelback Road. This is possible with the cooperation of Salt River Project and reimagining the road, bridge and sidewalk. This will be critical in the future to maintain a smooth traffic flow out of what will soon be a very congested area filled with residents, visitors and workers. Let’s not take our eyes off keeping downtown cottsdale great. Remember, you can’t have a great city without a great downtown.
Bill Crawford is a downtown Scottsdale resident and business owner.