Taking Its First Ride – the PHX Sky Train™ Debuts
With great fanfare and excitement, the PHX Sky Train™ made its first official journey on the track between the East Economy Parking train station and the train’s maintenance facility on Monday, May 14, 2012.
“It is a great day for our city,” said Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton. “We can feel the excitement in the air.”
Indeed, another milestone was achieved with this test run. Local media gathered to capture the momentous event as a crowd counted down “5, 4, 3, 2, 1.” The running of the train was met with cheering and applause.
The electrically-powered, automated PHX Sky Train™ will transport travelers between the METRO light rail at 44th Street and Washington, East Economy Parking and Terminal 4 beginning in the first quarter of 2013. The PHX Sky Train™ will run 7 days a week, 365 days a year, and will be free of charge. In future stages, the PHX Sky Train™ will serve Terminal 3 with a walkway to Terminal 2 by early 2015 and will continue to the Rental Car Center in the future.
At the East Economy Station, there will be many convenient amenities for travelers. These include boarding pass kiosks, bag check-in services, circulator vehicles to transport passengers from East Economy Parking and a pet park for the four-legged traveler. Travelers at the station won’t have long to wait either as trains will arrive and depart every three to four minutes. It will only be a two minute ride between the East Economy Parking train station and Terminal 4.
“Phoenix Sky Harbor continues to live up to its reputation as “America’s Friendliest Airport,” said Aviation Director Danny Murphy. “The Sky Train project will feature amenities and services as requested by our customers.”
The PHX Sky Train™ project also has several other unique features including being a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified project.
“The economic slowdown hasn’t stopped the PHX Sky Train™ from delivering employment and generating economic benefits to our City and region,” said Stanton.
In fact, since construction began in 2008, the project has created and sustained nearly 6,000 jobs for Stage 1, and an additional 2,000 jobs for State 1A. Mike Gentry, one of the employees who was hired at the start of this project, echoed the sentiments of how beneficial this project has been for the Valley.
“We are very proud of what we have built,” Gentry said. “This is great.”
Today, marks the beginning of the PHX Sky Train™ test runs. Passengers will see the trains testing throughout the year when they visit Phoenix Sky Harbor. For additional information on this exciting project, visit our PHX Sky Train section.
And, be sure to check out pictures on our Facebook and Google + pages.
Published: May 14, 2012