Call for Innovators:
Transit-oriented street design of proposed light rail station near 48th Street and Washington Street
Submissions due Nov. 16

Workshop at Ability 360 (formerly Arizona Bridge to Independent Living)
5025 E. Washington St., Phoenix, AZ 85034
4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Tues., Nov. 3


The Story

Modern cities understand the value of transit options, streets and beautiful public spaces. Phoenix is on a mission to make its growing transportation network, which includes more than 4,500 miles of roadways, more "complete" -- that is, transforming streets and sidewalks into corridors that are safe and easy to use for pedestrians, bicyclists and motorists alike. 

Today's Phoenix residents are more multi-modal than ever before, and utilize all forms of transit. As more residents choose light rail, bus, bicycling and walking, city planners have to be creative and design streets and transit hubs with a true sense of community and place.

The Challenge: A Call for Innovators

Phoenix is looking for local residents to submit design concepts for the streetscape around its next proposed Valley Metro light rail station -- near 48th and Washington streets.

The proposed station is within blocks of Ability 360 (formerly Arizona Bridge to Independent Living and Disability Empowerment Center), which provides programs that empower individuals with disabilities to live independently. Concepts for this station must ensure that nearby sidewalks and crossings are safe, comfortable and accessible to all. 

This Innovation Game invites creative thinkers to submit ideas that advance Complete Streets goals by improving pedestrian and wheelchair mobility near light rail.

The winning concept will be selected by a panel, and the designer will have an opportunity to work with the city during the actual architectural process. 

Design concepts must:

  • Be four pages or less;
  • Include an explanation or concept justification.


  • Limitations and specifications presented by the station platform plans;
  • Desirable elements such as shade, areas of refuge, crossing improvements and more to improve the transit-oriented streetscape.

What Kind of Concepts and Who Can Apply?

Phoenix is looking for concepts that are innovative, creative and take into account the needs of the neighborhood. Specifically, concepts should advance the goals of the city's complete streets policy by improving pedestrian and wheelchair mobility and access near the proposed station. Submissions should also provide new insights into the way the community experiences public transit. 

Ideas may be pragmatic and feature real-world improvements that are sustainable and affordable; or may instead consider a more pie-in-the-sky approach that has never before been seen in Phoenix. 

All submissions will be evaluated by the same criteria:

  1. Does the concept improve the rider experience in an innovative way?
  2. Does the concept address the pedestrian connectivity issues of this neighborhood and make it easy to access the station?
  3. Does the concept demonstrate a fundamental understanding of design and architectural principles as they relate to rider comfort, safety and human experience?
  4. Does the written justification effectively communicate design solutions? 

Anyone can apply! Experience will not be a factor in evaluations. 

Resources and Background

The City of Phoenix Public Transit Department, Streets and Transportation Department, and Valley Metro will be available to answer questions at a public workshop on Tues., Nov. 3 from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m.

The workshop will include a presentation on City Council-approved street configurations for the potential light rail station, as well as detailed specifications on light rail station engineering and architectural plans. Expert staff will be on site to answer questions or provide feedback on concepts.

Additional resources to support concept designs:

Valley Metro Design Criteria Manual

Valley Metro Urban Design Manual

GIS street view of proposed site

Get inspired:

Valley Metro Station Art Guide 2008, 2015


This is both a challenge and an opportunity to imagine what this stop will look like and what it can provide for our residents. It’s an exercise in place-making for a community that seriously benefits from public transit.
— Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton

Schedule for Submissions

Oct. 13           Call for Innovators opens

Nov. 3            Workshop at Ability 360

Nov. 16          Submissions due

Dec. 9           Winner announced


Want more information? Send us a message:

Name *

Submissions are due by 5 p.m. on Monday, November 16

Email your final concept to or deliver a hard copy to the Mayor's Office. 
200 W. Washington St., 11th Floor

The Phoenix Mayor's Office and Transit Department organized this PHX Innovation Game with support from Valley Metro, Ability 360, the Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture and Downtown Phoenix, Inc.