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Developing a new RTA plan

A 35-member citizens’ advisory committee, appointed by the Regional Transportation Authority Board, is charged with drafting a new 20-year regional transportation plan that, once approved, will seamlessly transition from the existing voter-approved RTA plan to the new plan. The current RTA plan and half-cent tax to fund the plan expire in June 2026.

Since May 2018, the committee has received information about the current transportation funding environment and growing regional transportation needs. The committee has approved guiding principles to consider when they start to develop the new plan. The public weighed in on the guiding principles and goals in late 2019. More than 85% of the 3,100 survey respondents indicated agreement or strong agreement on the following goals: improve the condition of existing roadways, provide efficient crosstown mobility, reduce congestion and reduce crashes at intersections.

Development of a new regional transportation plan will fulfill the RTA’s legal duty to prepare and adopt a regional plan that is funded by the RTA’s excise (sales) tax. Currently, the half-cent tax is collected in the RTA’s state-established special taxing district within Pima County.

This citizen-driven planning effort will carry forward the vision for the region’s transportation system that was established through the collaborative development of the 2006 voter-approved plan. The RTA’s goal is to provide a safe, reliable and efficient regional transportation system that protects and enhances the quality of life for the citizens of the growing region now and in the future.

The RTA promotes regional cooperation on transportation issues that extend beyond any one jurisdiction’s boundaries. By working together, local governments can deal effectively to solve issues associated with traffic congestion, air quality and access to jobs across the region.

The future RTA plan will be developed using an outcome-based approach to achieve the highest levels of transportation system safety performance.

Once a draft plan is developed by the citizens’ advisory committee and vetted through extensive public input, an election date will be set when the final draft is approved by the RTA Board.


Plan Development Goals

  • Reduce congestion
  • Increase mobility
  • Improve transit ridership
  • Reduce crashes
  • Provide safer bike and pedestrian facilities
  • Maintain or improve air quality
  • Reduce wildlife crashes
  • Improve conditions of existing roadways
  • Improve access to workplaces
  • Add functionality to key corridors


Transportation Insights

  • Investment in the region’s transportation system leads to enhanced regional mobility, safety and reliability to make each of our communities a better place to live
  • A continuation of the RTA excise (sales) tax would help meet the transportation demands of our growing communities and leverage other transportation resources
  • The RTA excise (sales) tax provides the most flexible transportation funding solution for the region
  • Current RTA revenues represent the greatest annual average transportation funding source for our region to supplement state and federal resources


RTA Plan Development Timeline

  • May 2018 – Established a new 35-member RTA Citizens Advisory Committee
  • May 2018 to June 2020 – Establish plan priorities
  • July 2020 to Date TBD – Development of new 20-year RTA plan
  • Fall 2019 through election (Date TBD) – Public input for plan development and eventual draft plan refinement
  • TBD – Draft plan review/final approval by RTA Board
  • TBD – Call for election