[Source: Jenny Vickers, Business Facilities] — Strategically positioned in the Southwest, the Greater Phoenix area is one of 10 U.S. markets projected to experience 85% of the nation’s growth over the next 35 years. Greater Phoenix, which consists of the City of Phoenix, much of the rest of Maricopa County, a large section of Pinal County, and small parts of southern Yavapai County, currently is the 13th largest area in the United States, with an estimated population of four million. The City of Phoenix is the largest state capital in the U.S. in terms of population and is the only state capital with a population of more than one million.
With a labor force of over two million people, Greater Phoenix is known as a business and innovation hub with international access for aerospace, high-tech, bioscience, advanced business, and sustainable technologies companies. Currently, over 20 major Fortune 500/1000 companies are located in Phoenix, such as Allied Waste, AT&T Inc., Bank of America, Boeing, Google, Morgan Stanley, and Wells Fargo. Honeywell’s Aerospace division is headquartered in Phoenix, and the valley hosts many of its avionics and mechanical facilities. Intel has one of its largest sites in the city, employing about 10,000 employees. Businesses are easily connected to the region, nation and the world with two major airports — Sky Harbor International Airport and Williams Gateway Airport — and a new light-rail system being launched in December 2008. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]
The article, Urban Planning Done Wrong, in the October issue of Dwell magazine calls the exurb developments of Phoenix the “worst in the U.S.”
“Developer-driven exurbs such as Anthem and Verrado surrounding Phoenix, Arizona, are prime examples of the unchecked low-density sprawl that urban planners around the globe are desperately trying to abandon. These developments are located some 30 miles from the city center, where a majority of jobs are located, and they are usually connected by only one major freeway. Residents thus depend on a long, narrow lifeline to meet their basic needs or fulfill simple tasks. Virginia Tech associate professor Robert Lang believes that in an uncertain future, these types of residential areas are the greatest disadvantage for long-term livability.”
Regarding said “distinction,” website unrefinery.com opines, “We hesitate to even call Phoenix a city; the decentralized home turf of Allied Waste would be best described as a 400-square-mile monument to sprawl, water waste, traffic bottlenecks, and crystal meth. Urban planning sometimes seems esoteric, but Phoenix offers a real-world reminder of why we need it.”