At a subcommittee meeting on January 25, 2023 for Economic Development and Equity, councilmembers were assured that Valley Metro light rail fares will be free for Super Bowl Experience event ticketholders as fundraising is nearly complete.

The City of Phoenix will be hosting multiple events throughout the greater Phoenix area and neighboring cities to celebrate the arrival of Super Bowl LVII on February 12. A few notable events include: Super Bowl Experience at Phoenix Convention Center on February 4-5 and 9-11; Super Bowl Experience at Margaret T. Hance Park on February 9-12; and Bud Light Super Bowl Music Fest at Footprint Center on February 9-11. 

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John Chan, Deputy City Manager and Director of the Phoenix Convention Center, flanked by his team members, Jessica Mefford-Miller, CEO of Valley Metro and Devney Majerle, President and CEO of Downtown Phoenix Inc., explained to councilmembers that Valley Metro’s Light Rail Ticket Partnership has nearly completed its fundraising goal of $150,000.  

“Valley Metro has been working with our partners for a number of months, […] to create an excellent Super Bowl LVII customer experience for residents and visitors across The Valley,” Mefford-Miller stated to the subcommittee. “Part of the Super Bowl experience is making it easier and more accessible for our residents and visitors to leverage light rail to access Super Bowl events.”

Mefford-Miller went on to explain that residents and visitors attending any of the Super Bowl Experience events whether at the Phoenix Convention Center or Margaret T. Hance Park would be able to present their print or electronic event ticket when prompted for fare inspection to ride the Valley Metro Rail at no additional cost. 

In addition to the Super Bowl Experience, Mefford-Miller stated that those attending the Bud Light Super Bowl Music Fest at the Footprint Center, in partnership with Valley Metro, will also receive free Valley Metro Rail fare at no additional cost.  

“This is one small but, I think, really important step toward making Super Bowl LVII the most sustainable Super Bowl yet by reducing automobile travel and congestion, not only in downtown Phoenix but on highways across The Valley,” said Mefford-Miller. 

Majerle, stated that while the Light Rail Ticket Partnership has not quite reached its goal of $150,000, she remains confident that the fundraising milestone will be reached through local donors, or through a safety net provided by Downtown Phoenix Inc. 

“Our downtown businesses are also great community partners; many are still considering donations to the program,” Majerle stated, “so while we’re confident that we will hit that fundraising goal, we do have a safety net in place where Downtown Phoenix Inc. is committed to re-investing non-EMSD assessment revenue–that we will generate in the month of February–back into this program for any remaining amounts needed.”

According to Downtown Phoenix Inc.’s website, Enhanced Municipal Services District (EMSD) refers to the funding that is used to “strengthen Downtown Phoenix development and to encourage an environment of activity, energy and vitality.”

When Laura Pastor, current chairperson of the Economic Development and Equity Subcommittee, asked the team if they were going to proceed with the partnership after confirming an outstanding $20,000 to reach the $150,000 fundraising goal, Chan responded that the partnership is planning to move forward.

“We’re fairly confident that we’re doing this, and we wouldn’t be here if we weren’t,” Chan stated. “This is pretty much breaking news that you are hearing here first at the EDE Subcommittee.”