Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Planned Tempe high-rises bring warning from Phoenix

[Source: Katie Nelson, Arizona Republic] -- The height of Tempe's new downtown high-rises is being contested again. Phoenix aviation Director Danny Murphy sent a letter to Tempe on Tuesday saying that the planned redevelopment of Monti's La Casa Vieja into a 26-story high-rise will be detrimental to Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, not far north of Town Lake. And the Federal Aviation Administration is objecting to the height of a planned 26-story Mill Avenue hotel. The complaints reignite a battle over how high Tempe's buildings should be. In the past, Phoenix and airline leaders criticized the heights of several high-profile and high-dollar Tempe condo projects and a proposed Cardinals stadium plan because they were in the takeoff paths of jetliners. They contend, among other reasons, that the heights interfere with some emergency takeoff "one-engine inoperative" procedures and that higher Tempe buildings would be bad for the airport because airplanes would have to take off at steeper angles, requiring the plane to carry lighter loads in the form of passengers or cargo to make the climb. Those height accusations consistently raise the hackles of Tempe officials who argue that no one should have control over their city's building heights but them.

[Note: To read the full article, click here. Photo source: Monti's.]