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Greening America's Capitals - Phoenix, AZ

In 2011, the city of Phoenix applied to receive design assistance from EPA’s Greening America's Capitals Program. Phoenix requested assistance with developing environmentally and economically sustainable designs to support the revitalization of Lower Grand Avenue and to serve as an example for other streetscape improvements in arid regions.

The design options developed with the EPA team’s assistance create streetscape and public realm improvements along Lower Grand Avenue and explore options that use green infrastructure techniques suitable for arid climates to capture and treat stormwater runoff. The designs encourage pedestrian and bicycle activity with enhancements that make pedestrians and bicyclists safer while maintaining on-street parking and providing space for a future streetcar or trolley.

The design options would not require any changes to the existing street section or curb line. They would convert outside travel lanes to parking and rain gardens, narrow the remaining travel lanes, add crosswalks, widen sidewalks where needed, and create curb bulbouts that reduce the distance required to cross the street.

In October 2013, the city's Streets Department removed two traffic lanes from Lower Grand Avenue and added bright green bike lanes, planters, and painted crosswalks to improve pedestrian safety.

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