Please call HDR on Monday October 3, 2011 and demand that they do not move forward on the Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway until the O’odham voice is heard.

Friday September 30, 2011, Lori Riddle and a group of supporters redelivered a letter of demands to international Engineering firm HDRs downtown Phoenix office located at

101 N. 1st Avenue
Suite 1950
Phoenix, AZ 85003-1923
Phone (602) 792-8800

The statement was from a previous visit to HDR where Lori Riddle read the statement aloud. This visit was to re-affirm that HDR take our demands seriously. The office visit came on the evening prior to the Gila River Indian Councils special meeting to decide on the wording of a ballot for community members to “vote” on the proposed Freeway Loop 202.  The meeting favored on the side of including a “No Build Option”. Members of Gila River Against Freeway Loop 202 state “It will still take a lot of teamwork to make sure this freeway doesn’t impact our Community in any way. There is more work to be done.”

Please Call HDR and demand that they do not move forward on the Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway until the O’odham voice is heard. The number is:Phone (602) 792-8800, If you are feeling Eager Call their Camelback office and remind the list of demands we left them in April at: (602) 522-7700

Here is the statement that was delivered on Friday and read in April:

Dear HDR

South Mountain is a sacred site to the O’odham people, the original people to this land. In both the years 2000 and 2005 the Gila River Indian Community passed resolutions stating that they are against the construction of this freeway. The Community is now working to pass a referendum for a vote and have their opinion on this proposed freeway heard.

We are here today to demand that you do not move forward on this project until the voice of the Gila River Indian Community is heard. We demand that you help assert the Community’s right to a vote on the freeway’s construction and ultimately we demand That you and ADOT be transparent about GRIC’s opportunity of “no build” as an option!

We also demand that you you take your role in completing the Environmental Impact Statement Report for the proposed construction of freeway Loop 202 and your association with the Arizona Department of Transportation seriously. We urge you to strongly consider the environmental and health risks.

Here is a bit more information on the Environmental Impact Statement and HDR:
On the Environmental Impact Statement

Why hasn’t there been an extensive Environmental Impact Statement Report produced by ADOT? Better yet why has ADOT insisted on pressuring the Gila River Indian Community to “accept” a route prior to the EIS being completed? What facts would surface pertaining to how such a freeway would impact the communities along the proposed route?

The fact of the matter is if you go to the official ADOT South Mountain Freeway page you will see that EISR has been the “next step” in the process-for years. It is not coincidence yet rather convenience that ADOT is attempting to and successfully “side stepping” the release of such a report. Upon completion, would the report be upfront about the everlasting compromises air quality within the southwest valley it would bring. According to the 43rd Avenue air monitor this area has registered the highest particulate matter readings).

Is there any way to truly measure the impacts that an approximately 40 stories high and 200 yards wide blast into a mountain will have on the community, culture and natural environment?

When asked about environmental impacts in meetings members of MAG have been noted to say that the area on South Mountain that would be affected is too small for any large animals to actively habitat. While research has repeatedly shown that numerous animal species thrive off of this area. Contrary to what many MAG members believe the Mexican Spotted Owl, Mountain lions and more than 30 different fish species call South Mountain their home.

If research were to be done for an EISR it is important to consider who would be doing it. In the case of Loop 202 it is the International engineering firm HDR. HDR has a large role within the South Mountain study team. HDR is the main firm that deals with many of ADOT’s EISR’s. They are also usually paid to design most infrastructure systems within Phoenix. Basically HDR is completing an amazing no interference balancing act of next-to-no-one checking their work.

What else does HDR do around the world?

The companies’ roots are buried deep within the military complex. Since the 1930s’ Company founder H.H. Henningson has been filling contracts with the US Army, Air Force and Navy. HDR has such a close connection with the US military that they have been awarded contracts to design air bases in even Newfoundland and Greenland.

In London HDR opened an office to capitalize on the anticipated privatization of the British healthcare system by designing modernized facilities. They have also participated in the furtherance of microelectronics and bio-sciences architecture in Los Altos, California. HDR has also bought out companies in the pharmaceutical industry.

Now HDR holds the power of deciding what environmental devastation plays out in the development of Loop 202. Does this sound like a company you would entrust your sacred place too?

Unless we pull our communities together and firmly say no and begin to organize against the Loop 202, before our  eyes goods will literally be profit driven through South Mountain up to Canada.

Not now not ever! No more loop 202!

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