Outstanding programs for Rotary in April

Brock Barnhart will be the featured speaker at Rotary’s April meeting.

Brock Barnhart will be the featured speaker at Rotary’s April meeting.

Norm Noble

On Tuesday, April 5, five outstanding students from Arizona College Prep-Erie campus, Basha, Chandler, Hamilton and Perry High Schools will participate in a speech contest held at the Sun Lakes Rotary breakfast that morning. Each student speaker will address how the Rotary Four Way Test might be applied to their lives or the lives of others (and especially to their peer group):

– Is it the Truth?

– Is it Fair to all concerned?

– Will it build Goodwill and Better Friendships?

– Will it be Beneficial to all concerned?

Speeches will be five to seven minutes in length and may be delivered from memory or extemporaneously. Each speech will be judged by select members of Sun Lakes Rotary.

The Four Way Test is one of the world’s most widely printed and quoted statements of ethics. It was created in 1932 by Rotarian Herbert J. Taylor and adopted by Rotary as its creed in 1943; The Four Way Test has been translated into more than 100 languages and published in thousands of ways.

On Tuesday, April 26, Brock Barnhart, Assistant Communications Director for ADOT (Arizona Department of Transportation) will discuss the South Mountain Freeway. The Loop 202 Freeway, also known as the South Mountain Freeway, will run east and west along Pecos Road and then turn north between 55th and 63rd avenues, connecting with Interstate 10 on each end.

The South Mountain Freeway is the last piece to complete the Loop 202 and Loop 101 freeway system. ADOT will deliver the Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway three years sooner and at a cost savings topping $100 million by taking an innovative approach to selecting the team to design, build and maintain the highway.

The 22-mile freeway, expected to open by late 2019, will provide a long-planned direct link between the East Valley and West Valley and a much-needed alternative to Interstate 10 through downtown Phoenix. Approved twice by Maricopa County voters, the South Mountain Freeway will complete the Loop 202 and Loop 101 freeway system.

While the phrase public-private partnership may evoke visions of a toll road, that isn’t the case with the South Mountain Freeway. Instead, this agreement, ADOT’s first for a highway project, provides the advantages of lower cost and shorter timeline that come from having one team not only design and build the freeway, but maintain it afterward.

The original plan called for construction of the freeway as nine individual projects. But after receiving an unsolicited proposal for a public-private partnership in 2013, ADOT decided to seek proposals using that approach.

Construction is scheduled to begin in summer 2016. Pre-construction activities, including geo-technical and utility work and property acquisition and preparation, have been underway since spring 2015 after ADOT received final federal clearance to move forward.