Category Archives: Population Trends

DVC supports Prop 104 Ballot Initiative

Prop 104

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The True Cost Of: Boycotting Arizona

How We Rebuild Neighborhoods After Foreclosures Explored by @ThePublicSquare

Zócalo Public Square foreclosure event PhoenixWhile the foreclosure crisis is starting to ease across Arizona and the country, neighborhoods still must reckon with the damage.

In what looks to be a great program, Zócalo Public Square and Arizona State University host an event on Monday, February 11, at the Heard Museum. The 6:30 pm event brings together a talented panel:

  • Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis economist William R. Emmons
  • Arizona State University geographer Deirdre Pfeiffer
  • Mortgage Resolution Partners CEO Graham Williams

The moderator will be Fernanda Santos, Phoenix Bureau Chief for the New York Times.

More information is here.

Zocalo Public Square February 11 event Foreclosures LOGO

Time to express your opinions on Phoenix’s General Plan Update and planning along light rail

MyPlanPHX provides an opportunity for all Phoenix residents to help shape the future of their city through participation in two very important projects: an update to the city’s General Plan (Conserve Create ConnectPHX), and planning for the communities along the light rail line (ReinventPHX). View the video below and then visit the MyPlanPHX website to begin sharing your opinions.

Central City South residents unveil “golden threads” to revitalize their neighborhood

Local residents of Central City South – young, old, and in-between – carefully thought through and developed a plan to revitalize their neighborhood. They unveiled their community engagement project, “Golden Threads,” this week. Here two young girls examine the map legend of desired buildings and amenities represented on the large-scale model before them.

Phoenix Revitalization Corp., with numerous civic and business partners, organized this project as part of the Central City South Quality of Life Plan.

Phoenix residents urged to complete U.S. Census form

[Source: City of Phoenix] — If you have not mailed back your census form, it’s not too late — just fill it out and mail it back.  If you didn’t receive a form, here’s the number to call: 1-866-872-6868.

Why?  The U.S. Constitution requires that the census — a count of everyone living in the United States — takes place every 10 years.  So it’s the law.  What’s more, filling out the brief, 10-question census form will guarantee the services you need.  For Phoenix residents, each person counted means $400 in federal and state funds for community services we all depend on:

  • Safe and clean parks
  • Neighborhood fire stations
  • Libraries with bilingual materials
  • Senior services
  • Head Start programs
  • Local bus service
  • And more

On average, every person counted in Arizona equals about $1,550 every year in funding.  Getting an accurate count in the census also:

  • Determines boundaries of Phoenix City Council districts
  • Draws state legislative districts
  • Allocates the number of Congressional seats for each state
  • Fairly distributes more than $400 billion annually in federal, state, city, and tribal funds to Phoenix residents based on an accurate population count

MALLS R US returns Feb. 28, Phoenix Art Museum

MALLS R US: A contemplative investigation on mall culture and effect by Helene Klodawsky

  • Date: Sunday, February 28, 2010
  • Time: 1 p.m. (doors at 12:30 p.m.)
  • Place: Whiteman Hall, Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 North Central Ave., Phoenix AZ 85004
  • Free Admission (ask for pass at front desk)
  • Film introduction by Kimber Lanning, Director, Local First Arizona

MALLS R US discusses the psychological appeal of malls to consumers, how architects design their environments to combine consumerism with nature and spectacle, how suburban shopping centers impart social values, and how malls are transforming the traditional notions of community, social space and human interaction.

As entertaining as it is informative, MALLS R US offers a trip to the mall like no other, reveling in their architectural splendor as consumerist paradises but also showing how the social dynamism they represent can be a destructive force, one that confuses the good life with the world of goods.  And yes Arizona, you will recognize several local sites.

Co-presented by No Festival Required; sponsored by CityCircles

Viewpoint: Phoenix, put aside dreams of Gotham

[Source: Joel Kotkin, Arizona Republic] — LOS ANGELES – Now that Phoenix’s ascendancy has been at least momentarily suspended, its residents are no doubt wondering what comes next.  One tendency is to say the city needs to grow up and become more like East Coast cities or Portland, Ore., with dense urban cores and well-developed rail transit.  The other ready option is always inertia – a tendency to wait for things to come back the way they were.

Neither approach will work in the long run.  Over the coming decade, Phoenix has to recalibrate its economy into something based on more than being a second option for Californians and speculative real-estate investment.  Instead, it needs to focus laserlike on economic diversity and creating good jobs.

The model here for Phoenix is not New York or San Francisco.  Phoenix can’t rival these cities for their 19th-century charm or early 20th-century infrastructure.  As we would say back in New York (my hometown): fuggedaboutit.  Instead of dreaming about Gotham, Phoenix should think more about Houston.  Like the Texas megacity, Phoenix is the ultimate late 20th-century town, dependent on air-conditioning, ample freeway space, and a wide-open business culture.

A century away from becoming “quaint,” Phoenix needs to follow Houston’s example of relentless economic diversification: in Phoenix’s case, away from dependence on tourism and construction.  Houston has done this by focusing beyond its core energy sector to fields like international trade, manufacturing, and medical services.  Phoenix’s opportunities may lie elsewhere but may include some of these same industries.  The idea is that the region needs to heal its job problem.  Only then can the real-estate market rebound on a solid basis.

This employment focus must replace the current obsession with changing the city’s urban form.  Despite the current problems, Phoenix has performed pretty well over the past decade, creating more new jobs than most Sun Belt cities, not to mention job losers like San Francisco, Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York.  Equally important, it still leads the nation over the past decade in net in-migration among the largest cities.  [Note: Read the full opinion piece at Viewpoint: Phoenix, put aside dreams of Gotham.]

The Economic Minute: Phoenix and the Recovery, or Beyond Ground Zero

[Source: Knowledge@W.P. Carey] — In this edition of The Economic Minute, economist Dennis Hoffman says that Arizona could be called “ground zero of the worst recession since World War II.”  The hard economic fact is that Arizona depends on in migration to keeps its economy vibrant, and the state is not exactly a people magnet right now.  But, Hoffman said, this is not the first time the shine has disappeared from Arizona sunshine.  The early ’90s were similar, but the decade that followed was a boom.  Hoffman advised that smart businesses should be preparing for the uptick.  Dennis Hoffman is director of the L. William Seidman Research Institute at the W. P. Carey School of Business.  The Economic Minute is presented at the monthly Economic Club of Phoenix luncheon.  Click here to listen.

Census release ranks Arizona’s poverty rate 13th highest in nation

[Source: Christine Rogel, Cronkite News Service] — Arizona’s poverty rate stood at 14.7 percent in 2008, 13th highest in the nation, according to U.S. Census Bureau data released Wednesday.  In all, 935,000 Arizonans were estimated to live in poverty, defined by the federal government as less than $14,489 per homeowner under 65.  That was up from 876,000 in 2007. “It’s worrisome because behind the numbers are real people and families struggling, and during the recession it has gotten worse,” said Timothy Schmaltz, coordinator for Protecting Arizona’s Family Coalition.  “We’re living in a state where we have food boxes, but they’re smaller than they were a year before because they are serving more people.”

The national poverty rate was 13.2 percent in 2008, up from 13 percent in 2007.  Mississippi had the highest rate at 20.8 percent; New Hampshire’s was lowest at 7.8 percent.  In Arizona, Yavapai and Greenlee counties had rates that fell below the national average: 12.9 percent and 11.3 percent, respectively.  Maricopa County’s rate was 13.4 percent.  The report said that one in three Apache County residents lived in poverty, giving that county the 45th-highest rate among more than 3,000 counties analyzed in the report.

Elizabeth Segal, professor of social work at Arizona State University, said that cuts in social services due to the state’s budget crisis have exacerbated the problem of poverty.  She said early childhood education is key.  [Note: Read the full article at Census release ranks Arizona’s poverty rate 13th highest in nation.]