Daily Archives: July 1, 2009

UOP Stadium outranks downtown Phoenix arenas in fan survey

2007_BCS_National_Championship.JPG[Source: Mike Sunnucks, Phoenix Business Journal] — The University of Phoenix Stadium outranks the region’s other pro sports venues, according to fan surveys conducted by ESPN and the University of Oregon. The ESPN magazine survey asked 5,000 fans nationwide their impressions of pro sports teams, owners, stadiums, and arenas.

The UOP Stadium in Glendale, home to the Arizona Cardinals, ranked 24th on the list.  The Arizona Diamondbacks’ Chase Field in downtown Phoenix came in 39th for stadium experience. Jobing.com Arena where the financially struggling Phoenix Coyotes play came in 72nd ahead of the Suns.  The Phoenix Suns’ US Airways Center ranked 88th among the 122 pro sports franchise stadiums and arenas. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

Midtown Phoenix empty lot where WWII housing once stood sold

[Source: G.G. George] — The Encanto Citizens Association Board attended the foreclosure auction on Thursday, June 11, 2009 for the vacant land on the north side of McDowell Road between 13th and 15th Avenues.  The property that the out-of-state investor, Scott M. Haskins, had purchased in 2006 for $5,400,000 had contained 32 moderate-rate apartments meant to house war workers during World War II.  It was just two years ago to the day, June 11, 2007, that Haskins had the historic Palmcroft Apartments demolished.  In ECA’s opinion, Haskins’ action irresponsibly wasted a historic resource that, properly managed, could have sheltered low-to-moderate income families for generations to come.

The Encanto Citizens Association opposed both the alley abandonment and the grab for the excess right-of-way at the 15th Avenue bus stop.  Councilman Michael Nowakowski, Mayor Phil Gordon, former Councilman Doug Lingner, and the other Council members denied the developer the alley abandonment and the excess right-of-way.  The F.Q. Story Historic District also supported ECA’s position.

The property was sold at auction to Michael Sklar of the Sonata Property Group for $500,000.  Mr. Sklar is familiar with the neighborhood, having previously lived at 1621 N. 11th Avenue.  The Encanto Citizens Association will continue to monitor this property and, in the best of all possible worlds, work harmoniously with a developer who truly has something to contribute to the appeal of Encanto-Palmcroft.

GAMA calls for entries for Trashy Sculpture Show, Sept. 26

[Source: Beatrice Moore] — The Bragg’s Pie Factory building at 1301 Grand Avenue in downtown Phoenix will host several special exhibits as part of the September 26, 2009 Grand Avenue Festival, which will celebrate the history of Lower Grand by highlighting interesting historic commercial sites, adaptive re-use projects, neighborhood sustainability, recycling, and the diverse small business community.

Suite 2, the main vaulted room in the Pie Factory building, will host the Trashy Sculpture Show, and will exhibit all manner of work made primarily from trash and recycled materials. Works can hang from the rafters, be free standing, be attached to the walls, be attached to the parking lot fence outside the building, or be hung from the trees in front of the building.  An entry fee of $10 per piece will be charged (proceeds go to the Grand Avenue Merchant’s Association); however, in the case of school groups the fee will be waived.  Work must be ready to install by September 24.

For more information on how to participate, contact Beatrice Moore at 602-391-4016 or e-mail.  Advance notice will be needed for projects slated for fencing outside the building or for tree sculptures.










Work can be for sale (or not).  Seventy percent of the sales price will go to the artist with the remainder to the Grand Avenue Merchant’s Association.  All work must be delivered ready to hang or exhibit in whatever manner it was intended.

Friends of Encanto Park seek bids for perimeter fencing

[Source: Susan Dale] — The Friends of Encanto Park are waiting for the last of three bids to come in this week for construction of the new wrought iron fence along the Encanto Golf Course on the north side of Encanto Boulevard and the “Encanto Entrada Portal” (new entry marker) at Eighth Avenue and Encanto Boulevard.

After discussions with City Parks staff members, during the middle of May, it was decided that members of the Friends of Encanto Park put the project out to bid and set a fund-raising target based on the actual cost of implementing the design.  Most of our “Friends” are out of town on vacations right now, so hopefully we will get back with city staff members with our bids towards the end of July.

We understand the City could start designing a Master Plan for the entire Encanto Park renovation this fall. The Friends of Encanto Park are planning to kick off its first of several private fundraisers this fall as well.

The $5 million allocated Phoenix Parks & Preserves Initiative (PPPI) funds will be distributed as follows: FY11/12 – $200,000; FY12/13 – $800,000, and FY13/14 – $4,000,000.

Procter & Gamble deems Phoenix all-time sweatiest

Shameless plug for sponsoring company.

Shameless plug for bestower of Phoenix honorific.

[Source: Lisa Biank Fasig, Phoenix Business Journal] — Phoenix has gone to the pits again, ranking as the sweatiest city in six of the past eight years.  The dubious honor is handed out by the Procter & Gamble Co. brand Old Spice, which since 2002 has measured the country’s sweatiest cities.

Phoenix has led the Annual Top-100 Sweatiest Cities list for the fourth consecutive year.  Over the time of the competition, the city has yielded an average summertime temperature of 94 degrees. The result?  The average Phoenix resident producing 27.7 ounces of sweat per hour — the equivalent of more than five gallons of milk per day.  Following Phoenix on the list are San Antonio, Texas; Las Vegas; Dallas and Houston. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

Arizona lawmakers approve bill allowing guns in bars

[Source: Jonathan Cooper, Associated Press] — The Arizona Senate has given final approval to a bill that would allow people with concealed weapons permits to carry a gun into a business that serves alcohol.  The 19-8 vote completes legislative action on the bill and sends it to Republican Gov. Jan Brewer.  She has not said whether she will sign it, but she has long been a supporter of gun rights.  The measure has pitted powerful groups representing gun and bar owners against each other, sparking a debate about whether guns and alcohol can coexist without bloodshed.

Critics of the measure say guns and alcohol are a dangerous combination.  “We don’t let people drink and drive, why should we let them drink and carry guns?” said Sen. Paula Aboud, D-Tucson, who voted against the bill.

Supporters say they should be able to protect themselves and their families even if they happen to be inside a business serving alcohol.  “It’s very important that criminals are now afraid rather than law abiding citizens,” said Sen. Jack Harper, R-Surprise, the bill’s sponsor.

The measure would ban drinking while packing and allow restaurants to deny entry to gun-toting citizens by posting a sign next to their liquor license.  [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

Jackson Street Entertainment District seeks Phoenix City Council support

[Source: KTAR Radio] — The Phoenix City Council was to vote Wednesday on a 12-acre entertainment district near Chase Field in downtown Phoenix.  The Jackson Street Entertainment District would cover an L-shaped property in the city’s warehouse district — on Jackson from First to Fourth Streets and along Fourth Street from Jackson to Lincoln Streets. “The idea is to create a focal point, a walking environment — large sidewalks, outdoor cafes, restaurants, nightclubs,” said attorney Larry Lazarus, who represents the developers.  The project could include up to 1,000 residential units.

The entertainment district, near Chase Field and US Airways Center, has been on the drawing board for a couple of years and Lazarus said now is the time to move forward with plans.  The developers want certain assurances from the city to help attract tenants and financing.  “No money is coming from city funds,” Lazarus said.  “There will be infrastructure changes that will need to be made later on down the road and we will be working on a development agreement with the city of Phoenix.”  He added, “We just believe that, when the recession is over — and it will be over some day — that this will be the focal point for the next big development.”

Although downtown Phoenix has numerous restaurants, Lazarus said, “You don’t see them when you walk out of the convention center and you don’t see them when you walk out of the ball park.  What we want to do is really create what we’ve called the ‘bug light’ — attracting people.”  The project would take five to seven years to complete, but some businesses could open early next year.  [Note: To read the full article, click here.]