BOURN UNVEILS PLANS FOR THRIFTY BLOCK - Developer Don Bourn unveiled preliminary plans for his Thrifty Block project along East Congress Street between South Scott and Stone avenues during yesterday's Rio Nuevo board meeting. About eight years ago, the district spent $900,000 demolishing buildings on the block, which stretches along Congress St. between South Scott and Stone avenues. Bourn received the land for $100 as part of a deal for him to build condos and retail on the property, but has yet to built anything there. The land became the subject of multiple lawsuits, which were finally settled last month. Bourn plans to build a five-story mixed-use development, with 44 residential units and a street-level floor designed for retail shops and restaurants. renovating the historic Indian Trading Post and the annex building of the old Valley National Bank (now Chase bank), which flank the east and west sides of the proposed new development. He says he expects construction to begin within a year. From the Star.

ON ACA EXCHANGES, PIMA COUNTY HAS NATION'S LOWEST PREMIUMS - In the 34 states now participating in the new federally managed health insurance exchange, Pima County is shown to have the lowest premiums in the country in a review conducted by the New York Times. The review, based on the price of a silver plan for a 50-year-old, showed premiums for insurance purchased on the exchange to be inversely proportional to the number of competing insurers in a given county. In Pima County, where eight insurers were competing, a 50-year-old would pay $235 per month for a silver plan. In Baker County, Georgia, where only one insurer was participating, the same 50-year-old would pay $673 per month. From the New York Times.

VANDALS STRIKE THE HOUGHTON ROAD IMPROVEMENT PROJECT - The Houghton Road corridor improvement project has been an ongoing target for vandals, in incidents ranging from stolen equipment to pranks with barricades and street signs. Officials say the incidents have been occurring since the project began about a year ago. The contractor has recently installed a camera system to monitor the project's staging area during non-work hours. TDOT project manager MJ Dillard says TPD is investigating the incidents, and has recently stepped up patrols in the area. Vandalism notwithstanding, the project is ahead of schedule. From KVOA.

SMALL PLANE CRASHES AT TIA - One person was hospitalized yesterday morning after a small plane crashed at Tucson International Airport. The twin engine Piper crashed on a runway while taking off shortly before 11 a.m., according to TIA spokeswoman Vicki Matthews. One Tucson Fire Department engine and 1 paramedic unit were dispatched to the scene, according to Tucson Fire Department spokesman Capt. Barrett Baker. Tucson International Airport is owned by the City of Tucson and managed by the Tucson Airport Authority under a lease agreement. From KVOA.

THIS WEEKEND: ENJOY HOWL-O-WEEN AT THE CITY'S REID PARK ZOO - This weekend, at 6 p.m. on October 25, 26 & 27, the City of Tucson's Reid Park Zoo features "Howl-O-Ween," a fun, safe trick-or-treating event. Admission is $7 for all ages, $5 for members of the Reid Park Zoological Society. Children under 2 are free.