Downtown pedestrians will get an advocate

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - For years, bicycles have ruled.

When leaders in the valley set up advisory committees or subcommittees, they were generally labeled at bicycle slash pedestrian.

But the bicycle portion usually got the most attention justifiably so.

The Tucson valley was transitioning to a bicycle friendly community and rules needed to be established.

Many of those rules are set.

Now comes the transformation of downtown.

It's been three generations since downtown has been a "go to" place but today, it's likely rivaling anything in its past.

Never has downtown seen so many people walking the streets and more are on the way.

So Tucson is setting up its first ever pedestrian advisory committee, whose sole function is to advocate for pedestrians.

"Like how wide sidewalks are, landscaping, where crossing walks should be, signalization, how long lights should be," says Carlos de Leon, from the Tucson Transportation Department. "Those are the kinds of things we're looking for feedback on."

At the same time, the modern streetcar makes its debut in the next few weeks with its testing period.

"People are not used to that bot in how to interact as pedestrians but also as drivers," he says. "So we're going to be rolling out a campaign teaching people how to do that."

But the task for has not been seated yet and even when it is, it probably won't hold its first meetings until the fall.

The city is still looking for members and downtown pedestrians are still looking for help.

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