TuSimple plans to add hundreds of jobs to its Tucson footprint, with an expansion of roughly 35,000 square feet of office, lab and warehouse space for continued technology development. In April 2021, TuSimple went public and raised more that $1billion with a successful initial public offering on the Nasdaq stock market. Prior to the IPO, TuSimple raised more that $600 million in private-equity investments, including a major stake owned by an affiliate of Chinese online giant Sina Corp, Industry partners including truck maker Navistar, Volkswagen’s commercial trucking unit Traton SE and United Parcel Service also had invested in the company. TuSimple has been running paid loads from its Tucson test center since 2017 with a driver and engineer aboard as the company awaits regulatory approval for fully driverless operations, which it expects by 2024.
2021 Common Ground Awards
Valencia Road Extension, Houghton Road to Old Spanish Trail
The Valencia Road extension was the result of public-private partner-ship between Rocking K Development, a subsidiary of Diamond Ventures, and Pima County. Psomas led the planning design and construction management of the project, while KE&G Construction, Inc. was responsible for the construction of nearly three miles of new two-lane roadway, including a new bridge, a grade control structure and bank protection at the Pantano Wash. This new road also required extensive acquisition of private property and state land easements. The design and construction teams worked extensively with the Vail School District.
Arizona’s second city is ascending fast, with bold city leadership and placemaking.
Fast-growing Tucson is buoyed by its sense of place, ranking #10 in both our Weather and our Parks & Outdoors subcategories. The city is poised to ascend up future national rankings, due to a torrent of new investment in all manner of green and common space. Its new Sun Link LRT is sure to improve quality of life, creating a focus on fewer cars and more walkability that’s designed to pull the sprawling population together, closer to downtown. Urban innovation that taps its outdoor bounty by increasing access to it is not a hard sell for a town where almost 25% are aged between 20 and 34. You can thank the University of Arizona (ranked #42 nationally in our University subcategory) for the city’s youthful bounce. The desert city is also blooming economically. House prices are rising fast as the post-pandemic migration from larger urban centers powers Tucson to a Top 5 ranking in our Change in Home Prices category. Citizens are also hanging in despite the pandemic’s economic impact, ranking #21 in our Change in Family Income subcategory. All this places the city in the Top 10 in our overall Prosperity category. Good thing, too, given that the local shopping ranks an impressive #17 nationally. www.BestCities.org