Downtown street car construction coming to an end

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Mark you calendars.

July 7 marks the 475th day of downtown streetcar construction.

That was the target date the city set when it began it's work on the modern streetcar called Sun Link.

"We'll be complete with most streetcar construction by that deadline," says Joe Chase the project manager who took over the project in February.

There will be some work to be done but the tracks should be completed, the barricades gone and most detours rerouted back to normal.

"We will still have some overhead contract work, signal work and sidewalk buttoning up work continuing on in the summer," Chase says.

For the folks who live, work or own businesses downtown, its been a long time breathing construction dust and driving in never ending circles.

"Well, not to be a naysayer, but I'll believe it when I seen it," says Hydra owner Margo Susco. "As a small business owner we take what we can get everyday when we show up."

But Susco says business is getting better as word gets out that work downtown is ending.

"The last downtown Saturday Night was packed," she says.

But even though the heavy construction work will be done, there will be no streetcars in town when work is finished.

If the major work gets done on schedule, no streetcars are due in Tucson until early August.

That's because of delays in delivery.

"I believe it was the plan for the streetcar to be here at the end of construction," says Chase. "But it was really close timing."

There will be some work on overhead contact lines this week along Congress and because of that there will be parking restrictions. Cars in violation will be towed.

But they will be rolling restrictions as the contract wire work proceeds down Congress from Toole.

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