Mesa City Council approves initial agreement to bring ASU downtown

A rendering of the Arizona State University campus proposed in downtown Mesa in 2016. The proposal was voted down, included in a sales tax hike on the ballot in November 2016./Photo: Colwell Shelor/Weddle Gilmore/West 8

By Lily Altavena | The Republic

The Mesa City Council approved the first step in bringing Arizona State University downtown during a packed meeting Monday night that drew opponents worried about what it will cost the city.

The intergovernmental agreement, which passed on a 5-2 vote, plunges Mesa into a familiar debate over whether ASU is the missing piece in reviving its downtown or a financial burden on a city grappling with ballooning public-safety pension costs.

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