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To educate the Greater Phoenix community about the benefits of a well-designed and accessible mass transit system, which represents a major component of a balanced regional transportation plan.


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About Friends of Transit

Friends of Transit was incorporated in 2001 as an Arizona nonprofit corporation.  The mission of Friends of Transit is to educate the public on the benefits and importance to the Greater Phoenix community of a well-designed and accessible mass transit system, which represents a major component of a balanced regional transportation plan.

The idea of forming Friends of Transit came about after the Phoenix electorate approved a sales tax increase in 2000 to fund a comprehensive transit system, consisting of improved bus service and the addition of a light rail transit component. As a result of the successful transit elections in the cities of Phoenix and Tempe, several community leaders identified the continuing need to educate the public about the benefits of the voter-approved plans, especially given that some elements of the system would not be implemented for several years following the vote.

Skip Rimsza, then Mayor of the City of Phoenix, led the charge on this initiative and invited more than 40 corporate and community leaders to meet and discuss the need for such an educational organization – thus, Friends of Transit was created and for 10+ years, has continued to educate the general public on the benefits of a balanced transportation system.


Board Members


Yvonne R. Hunter, Chair


Scott Smith
Scott Smith
John Derr
Mark L. Yalung
Jodi Sorrell
Katrina Heineking
Margaret Dunn
Amanda McGennis, Vice Chair
Marc Soronson, Executive Committee
Mayor Mark Mitchell
Jody Sims
Andrew Haines
Deron Lozano
Steve Hamelin
David Schwartz, Executive Director
Christina Bird, Treasurer


Maria Hyatt, Executive Committee
Councilman Jim McDonald
Gene Van Wagner
Melinda Alonzo
Eric Reese
C.J. Eisenbarth Hager
Sam Wheeler

Scott Smith

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Keep in Touch Want to hear the latest from Friends of Transit? Fill out the form on the right to sign up for email updates.

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Transit News

February 8, 2016 – Friends of Transit

Want More Information on the Tempe Streetcar Project?

Valley Metro and the City of Tempe are awaiting notification from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) on the application submitted to receive project funding through the Small Starts grant program. Keep up to date on the Tempe Streetcar Project by checking Valley Metro’s project page. Read More

February 5, 2016 – Friends of Transit

Chairwoman’s Corner – FOT Welcomes Scott Smith the Friends of Transit Board + Share Your Transit Thoughts and Questions

February 4, 2016 – Friends of Transit

Weekend Closures & Restrictions on Valley Freeways, Friday February 5 – Monday Feb. 8, 2016

Be sure to check out the weekend freeway travel advisory. Sign up for FOT emails to get this notice each week. Read More

FOT on Facebook

Great news for the City of Tempe! Check out the latest on the Tempe Streetcar Project below. #transitmeanscommunity ... See MoreSee Less

Great news this morning for Tempe and the Valley: the Tempe Streetcar has been included in the President's FY17 Budget - a really important milestone! Next step: Congress. Check out these photo simulations showing what the streetcar might look like along Mill Avenue.

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Being a bicyclist in the Phoenix Metropolitan area can mean a variety of different things. Whether you’re training, commuting, or just looking for a way to get around, check out our list of resources.




Light Rail

Light Rail is a great way to get around – check out our light rail resources for the Valley of the Sun and get the latest and the greatest on the light rail system.


Whether you’re training for a race, hiking, or looking to get from point A to point B, check out our pedestrian resources for the Phoenix Metropolitan area.


Learn more about the regional bus service in the Phoenix Metropolitan area including: tips on how to plan your trip, how to get your questions answered, and destinations of interest.





Our Conference is SOLD OUT! Registration is now closed – if you would like to be added to the waiting list, please click here to email Friends of Transit staff.


The Valley of the Sun is moving forward. Join Friends of Transit in exploring how to create a balanced regional transportation plan that adds value to our society and benefits people of all ages. “The Future of Transit” is all about purposeful planning for the future of transportation in the Phoenix Metro area. Click here for more information about the conference.
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