Blog Archives

Help make the Valley a better place

The Arizona Republic and azcentral.com have an online utility for residents to report issues affecting quality-of-life in their neighborhoods. Called “ValleyFix Phoenix,” people can submit suggestions to help make our city a better place to live for all.

Valley Fix: Phoenix (logo from the Arizona Republic)

Tell us about something that needs fixing near you. Add as many details as necessary. Uploading a photo of the problem would be very helpful. Tell us about potholes, scary intersections, playgrounds in need of maintenance or anything your goverment should fix.

Read more here and check out others’ reports–and even submit your own.

Downtown Phoenix parking lot considered for hotel site

[Source: Emily Gersema, The Arizona Republic]

Barron Collier Companies is investigating development ideas for a two-acre parcel that is now a parking lot at First and Washington streets.

Jay Thorne, a Barron Collier spokesman, said Hilton Worldwide officials are exploring the idea of building a hotel on the property, but nothing is firm at this point.

Before the recession hit, the site was earmarked for condominium towers.

It is near the massive downtown office and retail development CityScape.

Business leaders have said Phoenix could use more downtown hotels to accommodate an increase in visitor traffic tied to the Phoenix Convention Center’s recent expansion, a $600 million project that tripled the convention center’s space.

New hotels are coming. The Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold’s headquarters at Central Avenue and Van Buren Street shares space with a new Westin that will celebrate its grand opening on March 10.

Also, CityScape developer RED Development is building a $90 million boutique Palomar Hotel, which will be managed by Kimpton Hotels. The Palomar is expected to open in 2012.

My Florist Cafe near downtown Phoenix closes its doors

[Source: Howard Seftel, Arizona Republic]

Tom Tingle/The Arizona Republic

Once a hot spot on the corner of McDowell and Seventh Avenue, My Florist Café has seemed to be on life support for years.

Now the plug has been pulled: The restaurant’s phone has been disconnected. Equipment was being pulled out of the kitchen Friday morning. And word has gone out to performers scheduled for upcoming events that the venue is not available.

Back in its 1990s heyday, My Florist Café attracted a cool crowd of bohemians and suits, folks who had almost no downtown Phoenix-area hangout alternatives. Here you could get decent grub, and a vibe that could make you plausibly pretend you were in a big city.

But over the past decade, as downtown grew, My Florist Café couldn’t keep up, and lost its cachet. By 2010, it had pretty much become irrelevant. The restaurant also seemed to suffer when a second location was opened in Ventura, Calif.

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