ADOT extends offers to buy homes in new freeway's path

Hundreds of homes in Ahwatukee are scheduled to be demolished to make room for the new South Mountain Freeway.

The Arizona Department of Transportation is in the process of buying those homes, and have begun making offers to homeowners. Some of those homeowners are not happy with the offers.

ADOT needs to purchase around 200 homes and businesses near 24th Street and Pecos.

There is a church and several homes in the area, in four years it will be gone, and there will be a freeway offramp in its place.

Ahwatukee homeowners are meeting with ADOT officials this month to find out how much money they're getting for their homes. 

One homeowner who spoke to FOX 10 was not happy at the figures he got.

"It's not fair, it's not right," he said.

ADOT is offering him $210,000 for the house and $18,000 for moving expenses.

"The offer for the home is just barely over what I owe on the home, and it's not enough for me to be able to afford to have my family stay in the neighborhood... I put my number into MLS last week and I got $240,000,"" he said.

In four years, his neighborhood will be the location of an off-ramp. Now he has until the end of the month to negotiate, and 90 days to find a new home and move.

"I'm not asking for the world; I'm asking for what is right, and I think that's a disturbing number based on they're uprooting me from my home... where am I going to live? Are my kids still going to be able to go to the same school," he said.

And while people are being given 90 days to pack up and leave, the church next door gets more time to relocate.

"We would have two years, we need two years in order to find another place and to build," said Senior Pastor Allan Fuller, with the Mountain Park Community Church.

ADOT says businesses will get more time than homeowners to relocate. Mountain Park Community Church is also in the process of negotiating with ADOT, they plan to re-build somewhere in Ahwatukee.

"This is our place, so we will do all that we can going high instead of wide if we have to, but this is our place, and we want to stay here," said Fuller.

So far, ADOT has extended 70 offers to homeowners and only 8 have accepted. The plan is to break ground on the new freeway around this time next year, with traffic flowing by 2020.
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