Communities in the Valley of the Sun
Ahwatukee, Apache Junction, Chandler,
Gilbert, Mesa, Queen Creek,
Sun Lakes, Tempe
Tempe is a vibrant college town and home to the largest university in the United States, Arizona State University (ASU).
“Tempe’s cultural attractions, vibrant downtown, festivals, sporting events, shopping opportunities, Arizona State University, Tempe Town Lake, Papago Park and an array of accommodations add up to a great vacation. Tempe’s central location provides easy access to the best of Arizona tourist attractions located throughout the state. Indeed Tempe, Arizona is in the middle of it all!”
Tempe was the earliest of Phoenix’s urban neighbors, founded in 1871. As the home of ASU, it possesses the cultural exuberance of a campus town – host to dozens of concert artists and lecturers each year. It is also home to manufacturers and electronics industries.
It is an urban community of 165,000 residents. The city is the state’s seventh largest town neighboring Mesa, Scottsdale, and Phoenix, Arizona.
Arizona State University, with a main campus of over 51,612 students located in Tempe. The count for all valley campus students is 61,000. ASU is a research institution, well-known for its engineering and business colleges. The professors, staff, and researchers have played an important role in contributing to Tempe’s considerable educational and cultural resources. Online ASU campus location maps . When the light rail is finished, the trip from Tempe to downtown Phoenix will be only 20 minutes.
An exciting development is the Tempe Town Lake on Rio Salado with a dam holding back 220 acres of water on a normally dry river bed, providing boating and entertainment. Rio Salado is Spanish for Salt River.
New interactive City maps are now available. You can find distances between locations and popular attractions.
Mesa, the state’s third largest city sits on a plateau southeast of Phoenix, Because it sits atop a plateau, it was named Mesa, a Spanish word that means “tabletop.”
Mesa, east of Tempe, was incorporated in 1889. The town was stamped with the cultural character of its Mormon founders and their family-oriented values. In 1928 the Mormon Temple, still one of the Valley’s most impressive structures, was completed, underlining Mesa’s role as “the Mormon capital of Arizona.” Mesa is one of the nation’s fastest-growing cities. Low costs of doing business, tax structure, skilled and well-educated workforce, low crime rate, superior schools, affordable housing and the quality of life has attracted 450,000 total people to Mesa.
Its economy is one based on manufacturing as the city attracted and kept such industrial giants as Boeing and Motorola. Throughout its dramatic growth, Mesa has maintained the traditional values of its founders, priding itself on fine schools, churches, and an atmosphere of economic opportunity, preserving the community image generations of Mesans have of “a fine place to raise a family.”
Williams Gateway Airport in southeast Mesa is a designated location for aerospace, education and industrial development. Williams Gateway and Falcon Field offer complete aviation facilities to industrial and commercial development locally.
Chandler is another of the expanding cities in Arizona. Now the seventh largest in the state, and perfect for young families due to its draw of high-tech firms like Intel.
Chandler, south of Mesa, grew out of the agricultural holdings of Detroit veterinarian Alexander Chandler, who came to the Valley in 1887. Chandler has attracted high-tech industry, particularly electronics plants. The transformation from farmland to booming city continues. Streets are widened – only to be widened again – and residential subdivisions seem to spring up from the earth, flourishing like the cotton grown in the old days.
The Price Road area is being referred to “The High Tech Bio Tech Financial Services Corridor” which boasts 23,000 employees from companies such as Motorola Inc., Avnet, Freescale Semiconductors Inc., Microchip Technology and others. Conveniently, the freeway Loop 202 connects I-10 and Loop 101. The Santan Freeway-Loop 202 connects U.S. 60 from the south and is scheduled to complete the north connection from the U.S. 60 to Red Mountain Freeway-Loop 202 in 2007. (Source: Gibbons,The Business Journal)
Chandler Airpark shows the city’s “pro-business with appropriate growth” strategy.
The Area Plan is designed as a mix of land uses compatible with the operations of the Chandler Municipal Airport. The Airpark is located within the Chandler Enterprise Zone offering tax incentives to qualifying employers.
Chandler celebrates the best it has to offer through unique festivals. In March, the annual Chandler Ostrich Festival attracts over 200,000 people with a parade, carnival, and live entertainment and ostrich races.
Gilbert, southeast of metropolitan Phoenix, is 5th-fastest-growing city in the country. Overflowing with “Old West Charm,” Gilbert holds country auctions and barbecues as part of its everyday social life.
A superior school system, quality housing in a variety of price ranges, recreational amenities and employment opportunities are some of the reasons that Gilbert has attracted new residents and businesses.
Named for Robert Gilbert, who donated land for the railroad station, the town maintains a proud sense of its Old Western flavor and charm.
Gilbert has a progressive town government with a pro-business attitude and an emphasis on quality development. Doubling its population every five years since 1980, the Town has met the many challenges of preserving the small town atmosphere of the community, while promoting high tech industry and progressive planning for the future.
Gilbert offers many amenities enhancing the lifestyle. The village concept of planned communities includes parks, equestrian trails, fishing, boating, and local business services all within walking distance. Gated communities, as well as equestrian properties are available in Gilbert. According to the Gilbert Chamber of Commerce, however you define your lifestyle, Gilbert has something for you!
Agriculture still plays an important role in the area with cotton, grains, alfa alfa, vegetables, citrus and livestock dominating agricultural production.
Urban professionals and their families as well as retirees are the primary dwellers of the rapidly growing community in the southeast corner of Phoenix city limits, largerly separated from the majority of the city by South Mountain.
Ahwatukee (Ah-wah-too-key) borders the 16,500 acre South Mountain Park and offers everything from apartment, townhome, and patio-home living to Master Planned Communities and custom territorial estates. Retail stores and schools have been built to accommodate growth, and recreation and community activities are in ample supply.
Mountains, Lakes, Majestic Sunsets, Breathtaking Golf and Pristine Desert. These are the words that describe the warmth and charm of a small town blessed by the amenities of a big city just next door. Interstate 10 forms the eastern border and provides convenient access to all parts of the Valley. Many residents work in nearby Tempe, Mesa and Chandler. Most of Ahwatukee is built out. Only the Foothills Reserve and the South Mountain 620 remain for a new development
With an excellent school district, open park spaces, shopping centers, golf courses, and lakes, and little hills, Ahwatukee has much to offer. Although not actually a separate town, Ahwatukee has a strong identity and a sense of community.
Information on where the proposed freeway route could possibly go is on: www.southmountainfreeway.com