PMPC Request USACE 404 Permit be Denied to ADOT for SMF Loop 202

The Phoenix Mountains Preservation Council Board of Directors and members worked with PMPC attorney, Susan Montgomery to analyze and provide their concerns to the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers (USACE) regarding Arizona Department of Transportation's (ADOT) request for a 404 permit. Providing ADOT with a 404 permit, allows continued construction of the South Mountain Freeway Loop 202 (SMF Loop 202) over the Salt River, washes and wells located in the freeway's alignment.

PMPC member, Libby Goff, represented PMPC at a USACE public hearing on May 9 held on the Gila River Indian Community. Ms Goff provided a brief outline of PMPC's concerns which were expanded in the detailed comment submitted to the USACE on the May 19 deadline. See the PMPC comments. Other organizations attending the USACE public hearing included Protecting Arizona Resources and Children (PARC), Sierra Club and several Gila River Indian Community representatives.

PMPC has requested that a 404 permit not be granted to ADOT over their continued disregard for environmental analysis required by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the permit is not in the public interest, ADOT's failure to demonstrate that the preferred freeway alignment is the least environmentally damaging practicable alternative and the lack of information to show how ADOT will minimize and compensate for impacts of the Project. PMPC has opposed the SMF Loop 202 alignment which requires blasting through three ridges on the west end of South Mountain including 31 acres of South Mountain Park/Preserve.

The PMPC Board of Directors would like to thank members and attorney Susan Montgomery for continuing to be engaged in the advocacy necessary to protect our Phoenix Mountain Preserves for the recreational and natural enjoyment for current and future generations.