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More than $8.2 billion in public and private capital has been invested in developments near the first 20 miles of the light-rail line that extends from Phoenix and Tempe into Mesa, Ariz., Valley Metro and local government officials announced yesterday.The economic development activity within one-half mile of the system will include another $346 million in commercial and residential building in the planning stages, according to a Valley Metro press release."Light rail has been transformative for our downtown and our economy," said Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton. "With it we’ve linked jobs, education, arts and culture in a way that would not have been possible otherwise."Stanton and Tempe Mayor Mark Mitchell yesterday announced the latest economic development impact of the light-rail system since Valley Metro began keeping track following the start of construction in 2005. An additional $90 million in private and public development has occurred since construction began on the Central Mesa extension in June 2012.By the numbers, economic development activity along the 20-mile line has included 204 projects, $6 billion in private capital investment, $2.2 billion in public investment, more than 10 million square feet of commercial/office space, 15,328 residential units and nearly 3,000 hotel rooms.
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