Congress closes for streetcar construction

Tucson's trolley project will be 4 miles long and take a year to build, but local businesses are worried about financial bumps along the way.

Congress closes for streetcar construction

CREATED Apr 10, 2012

Reporter: Corinne Hautala

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) – A stretch of Congress Street is now close through the summer.  The road will be torn up build the railway for the modern streetcar.

Congress Street between Toole and Stone Avenue will be closed for the next four months.  Jesse Gutierrez, the streetcar construction project manager, told 9OYS the project is going smoothly so far.

With barricades up, there are a slew of detours, causing concern for downtown business owners.

“We're going to be doing some special promotions,” responded Mark Levkowitz when asked how he’ll try to maintain sales at his downtown business.

Gutierrez said the construction is set up to have a minimal impact on traffic and businesses.

“We've done quite a bit to keep the traffic flowing in the downtown area to help their patrons get to their stores,” said Gutierrez.

There’s also a downloadable map on the modern streetcar’s website, where travelers can find the available parking downtown, including garages and parking lots.

Gutierrez said sidewalks will remain open.

“I think the street car project is going to bring a lot more people into downtown,” said Gutierrez.  “A lot of people have concerns about driving downtown, and parking and one-way streets.  This way they can go someplace that's easy to get to, park someplace easy, hop on a streetcar and get to a bunch of great places.”