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PHX Sky Train Stage 2 Automated People Mover System

Expanded transit service improves passenger mobility, increases safety, and reduces congestion at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.
  • PHX Sky Train transit vehicles move along an elevated guideway at the Phoenix airport - Gannett Fleming.

    PHX Sky Train Stage 2 connects terminals to ground transportation, parking lots, and rental cars.

  • Rendering show exterior of new PHX Sky Train station built on the top floor of a rental car center - Gannett Fleming.

    Train service to the Rental Car Center Station, shown in a rendering, will end long shuttle lines.

  • Rendering shows the exterior of a new PHX Sky Train station near ground transportation facilities - Gannett Fleming.

    The 24th Street Station, shown in a rendering, supports ground transportation and future expansion.

Client
City of Phoenix Aviation Department

Partner(s)
Lea + Elliott, Hensel Phelps, Bombardier, Kimley-Horn and Associates, SmithGroup

Location
Phoenix, Arizona

Our Role
Lead Designer and Program Manager; Structural, Civil, Mechanical, Plumbing, Vertical Transportation, Security, and Geotechnical Engineering Design; Construction Administration.

Data
Size
2-mile guideway, 2 elevated stations
Construction Cost
$745 million
Completed
In progress
Type
New Construction
Outcomes
  • Rapid transit connection to all major airport facilities and regional transit
  • Elimination of 30-minute wait/travel times for shuttle bus service from terminals
  • Full transit capacity for the airport’s long-term growth and development
  • Reduction of daily vehicle count by 20,000 reduces airport roadway congestion.

A 2-mile extension of the trailblazing PHX Sky Train® will connect 14 million travelers a year to the Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport’s consolidated Rental Car Center and new Ground Transportation Center. The project will reduce traffic congestion and relieve wait times for shuttle bus service between terminals and the Rental Car Center, which can top 30 minutes during peak travel periods, when the center serves 34,000 people a day.

The existing 3.2-mile PHX Sky Train line connects the airport’s Valley Metro Rail Station to airport terminals. The Stage 2 extension, connecting the terminals to the Rental Car Center and Ground Transportation Center at 24th Street, will be a powerful catalyst for long-term airport growth and adjacent private development. It also supports the airport’s sustainability goals, helping reduce the daily vehicle count by 20,000. PHX is expected to serve 58 million travelers in 2024, up from 44 million in 2017. The opening of PHX Sky Train Stage 2 is scheduled for 2022.

What We Did

Gannett Fleming is the fixed-facilities designer of record for PHX Sky Train Stage 2, providing guideway and support structure design from concept to completion. The project’s dual-lane guideway includes two depressed sections that will pass through underpasses built 19 to 26 feet belowground to carry trains below two future aircraft taxiways. The undercrossing structures were designed to facilitate taxiway construction without affecting train operations. The Stage 2 guideway will serve three new stations: the Rental Car Center Station, built into the upper level of the existing structure; the 24th Street Station, which will connect to nearby parking and ground transportation facilities and planned commercial development; and a station that will serve the airport’s future West Terminal. Design work at the third station includes splitting the guideway to accommodate a central platform and future terminal connections.

The project used a CM-at-Risk (CMAR) model to support fast-track delivery, enabling early identification and mitigation of constructability issues and allowing for overlapping design and construction processes. To highlight the project’s sustainability features, our firm registered PHX Sky Train Stage 2 with the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure (ISI), making it eligible for the ISI Envision award. This is the first project Gannett Fleming has registered for Envision® certification.

Key Features

  • Aircraft bridges will carry two future taxiways over the train system
  • Elevated 24th Street Station accommodates traveler parking, employees, ground transportation, and future development
  • Elevated Rental Car Center Station built directly into the existing Rental Car Center creates a seamless passenger connection with terminals
  • Three traction power substations power 24 additional transit vehicles
  • CMAR model allowed for overlapping design and construction to support fast-track delivery.

Sustainability Features & Outcomes

  • PHX Sky Train relieves traffic congestion and reduces the airport’s daily vehicle count by 20,000, which reduces greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 6,000 tons annually
  • Elimination of airport shuttle bus fleet ends bus emissions and curbside idling, providing additional air quality improvements
  • LEED® Gold certification for the PHX Sky Train infrastructure recognizes sustainable design and construction
  • Stage 2 of the Sky Train is pursuing an ISI certification through Envision with a minimum goal of a silver certification.

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