AN INTRO TO DOWNTOWN PHOENIX HISTORY AND FACTS

The City of Phoenix defines Downtown as the area between 7th Street and 7th Avenue, from McDowell Road on the north to Buckeye Road on the south.

The history of Downtown Phoenix and Central Phoenix history runs deeper than most would expect. It’s history is rich dating back to 1867. Known as The Valley of the Sun, Downtown is now the 5th largest metropolitan city in the nation.

Location: Between the “Seven’s” or not?

Downtown and Central Phoenix is generally defined “between the 7’s.” However, the majority of downtown development is concentrated in the smaller area surrounding the intersection of Washington St. and Central Avenue.

Location Perspective

But due to major, recent growth, it depends on who you ask. Some define the boundaries from Seventh Street on the east, the railroad tracks south of Jackson Street and Interstate 10 on the north. However, others define it from from 16th Street on the east, to 19th Avenue on the west, then from Jackson Street to the south and to McDowell Road at the north. It’s all a matter of perspective as our city continues to grow.

Downtown Central Phoenix AZ

Downtown Phoenix is one of a the few major business districts in the city and is the central business district of the City of Phoenix, Arizona.

Central Phoenix and Downtown Locations are Loaded with Old and New Properties

It’s located in the heart of the Phoenix metropolitan area or ‘Valley of the Sun’ with a large variety of designated historic districts housing some classic, vintage homes attracting people from all walks of life. The new high-rise condos emerging are quickly changing the skyline.

Political and Governmental Buildings

Downtown Phoenix, being the county seat of Maricopa County and the capital of Arizona, serves as the center of politics, justice and government on the local, state and federal levels.

The area is a major center of employment for the region, with many financial, legal, and other national and international corporations housed in a variety of skyscrapers.

Arts, Craft’s and Sports

Major arts and cultural institutions also call the area home. Downtown Phoenix is a center of major league sports activities, live concert events, and is an equally prominent center of banking and finance in Arizona. Regional headquarters for several major banks, including JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, US Bank, Bank of America, Compass Bank and MidFirst Bank are all located within or close proximity to the area.

History Downtown Phoenix

The Jefferson Hotel, now the Barrister Place, in 1916 in Phoenix.

A Little History of Downtown Phoenix

Early Settlement

The town of Phoenix was settled in 1867, and incorporated in 1881 as the City of Phoenix.

Territorial era

In 1870, a meeting was held to select a town site for the influx of pioneers coming to the recently recognized town of Phoenix. 320 acres were purchased for $50 raised by popular subscription.

Between the Seven’s Established

But, this original site, the whole of the town of Phoenix in that day, encompasses what would presently be the Downtown Core, bordered by Van Buren Street south to Jackson Street, and Seventh Street to Seventh Avenue.

Phoenix Street Railway Historic Phoenix

Phoenix Street Railway 1887

Washington Street

With the first survey of the new town, streets were laid out in a grid, with Washington Street as the main east-west thoroughfare.

Naming of the Streets

Originally, the north-south streets originally bore Native American tribal names, but were changed to more easily remembered numbers, with everything east of Center Street (later Central Avenue) named as streets and everything west as avenues. The town continued to grow, and was eventually incorporated as a city on February 28, 1881 centered around downtown.

Phoenix Incorporation

Throughout the 1880’s the newly incorporated city made many strides toward modernization with the construction of one of the first electric plants in the West as well as the opening of the horse-drawn streetcar line.

The Phoenix Street Railway system was eventually electrified and expanded to several different lines that connected Downtown Phoenix to other neighborhoods and cities in the Valley.

Independence Day of 1887

Independence Day of 1887 heralded the arrival first Southern Pacific train. This opened up the economy of the young city, as goods now flowed in and out by train as opposed to wagon. As Phoenix became the center of commerce in the territory, the capital was moved to Phoenix, with temporary offices being set up in Downtown.

The Beginning of Phoenix’s Story

Downtown Central Phoenix History

Horse-drawn trolley cars in Downtown Phoenix from 1887 to 1948.

The city of Phoenix’s story begins as people from those settlements expanded south, in conjunction with the establishment of a military outpost to the east of current day Phoenix.

Agriculture

Phoenix served as an agricultural area that depended on large-scale irrigation projects.

Pre-World War II

Until World War II, the economy was based on the “Five C’s”: cotton, citrus and cattle, climate and copper. The city provided retail, wholesale, banking, and governmental services for central Arizona, and was gaining a national reputation among winter tourists.

Post World War II

The post-World War Two years saw the city beginning to grow more rapidly, as many men who had trained in the military installations in the valley, returned, bringing their families.

Population Growth Post War

The population growth was further stimulated in the 1950’s, in part because of the availability of air conditioning, which made the very hot dry summer heat tolerable, as well as an influx of industry, led by high tech companies. The population growth rate of the Phoenix metro area has been nearly 4% per year for the past 40 years.

Growth Rate Slows During the Great Depression

The growth rate slowed during the Great Recession but the U.S. Census Bureau predicted it would resume as the nation’s economy recovered, and it already has begun to do so. While currently ranked 6th in population, it is predicted that Phoenix will rank 4th by 2020. Currently it’s the 5th most populous city in the United States.

CLICK HERE to search For Downtown and Central Phoenix High Rise Luxury Condos, Lofts, Row Homes and Townhomes

129 matches found

$234,999
Front View of Building
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Property Type: Residential
# of Bedrooms: 1
# of Bathrooms: 1
Square Footage: 837
Year Built: 2005
Subdivision: ORPHEUM LOFTS CONDOMINIUM 2ND AMD
City/Town Code: Phoenix
Description: Distinction and City Views of Downtown Phoenix at the Orpheum Lofts! Fine ...
Status: Active
Last Updated: January - 21 - 2020
IDX
$205,000
1718 W COLTER Street, Phoenix, AZ 85015
View Photos (24)
Property Type: Residential
# of Bedrooms: 3
# of Bathrooms: 2.5
Square Footage: 1349
Year Built: 2004
Subdivision: MISSION GATE CONDOMINIUM
City/Town Code: Phoenix
Description: JUST MOVE-IN! Private, gated 3/ bedroom 2.5/bath + 2 car-garage Townhome is...
Status: Active
Last Updated: January - 20 - 2020
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$265,000
1130 N 2ND Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004
View Photos (30)
Property Type: Residential
# of Bedrooms: 1
# of Bathrooms: 1
Square Footage: 723
Year Built: 2017
Subdivision: EN HANCE PARK CONDOMINIUMS
City/Town Code: Phoenix
Description: WELCOME HOME! Stunning modern condo living. Experience the ease of living d...
Status: Active
Last Updated: January - 20 - 2020
IDX
$173,000
3411 N 12TH Place, Phoenix, AZ 85014
View Photos (16)
Property Type: Residential
# of Bedrooms: 2
# of Bathrooms: 1.5
Square Footage: 1063
Year Built: 1980
Subdivision: OSBORN TOWNHOMES UNIT 1-12
City/Town Code: Phoenix
Description: This rare find easy care 2 story townhouse is priced to sell! 2 car attach...
Status: Active
Last Updated: January - 20 - 2020
IDX
$399,000
1130 N 2ND Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004
View Photos (47)
Property Type: Residential
# of Bedrooms: 2
# of Bathrooms: 2
Square Footage: 1028
Year Built: 2017
Subdivision: EN HANCE PARK CONDOMINIUMS
City/Town Code: Phoenix
Description: Welcome to your brand-new modern condo located steps from Roosevelt Row! Th...
UCB or CCBS: No
Status: Active
Last Updated: January - 20 - 2020
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$449,900
200 W PORTLAND Street, Phoenix, AZ 85003
View Photos (26)
Property Type: Residential
# of Bedrooms: 2
# of Bathrooms: 2
Square Footage: 1104
Year Built: 2016
Subdivision: PORTLAND ON THE PARK CONDOMINIUMS 1ST AMD
City/Town Code: Phoenix
Description: View booming downtown Phoenix from your living room in this premium Portlan...
Status: Active
Last Updated: January - 20 - 2020
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$425,000
2011 Renovation of Historic 1926 building.
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Property Type: Residential
# of Bedrooms: 2
# of Bathrooms: 2.5
Square Footage: 1693
Year Built: 1926
Subdivision: CATHEDRAL TOWNHOMES CONDOMINIUM AMD
City/Town Code: Phoenix
Description: Fabulous Roosevelt opportunity! Charming Historic 1926 building was fully r...
Status: Active
Last Updated: January - 20 - 2020
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$325,000
1 E LEXINGTON Avenue, 401, Phoenix, AZ 85012
View Photos (33)
Property Type: Residential
# of Bedrooms: 2
# of Bathrooms: 2
Square Footage: 1297
Year Built: 2008
Subdivision: One Lexington Avenue Condominiums
City/Town Code: Phoenix
Description: High Rise Living at its finest! This well appointed 2 Bedroom, 2 bath in 1...
Status: Active
Last Updated: January - 20 - 2020
IDX
$279,000
706 E WASHINGTON Street, 122, Phoenix, AZ 85034
View Photos (26)
Property Type: Residential
# of Bedrooms: 2
# of Bathrooms: 2
Square Footage: 1158
Year Built: 2003
Subdivision: ARTISAN PARKVIEW CONDOMINIUM
City/Town Code: Phoenix
Description: Located in the heart of downtown Phoenix, this beautiful 2 bedroom/2 bath t...
Status: Active
Last Updated: January - 20 - 2020
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$266,900
5207 N 16TH Lane, Phoenix, AZ 85015
View Photos (33)
Property Type: Residential
# of Bedrooms: 3
# of Bathrooms: 3
Square Footage: 2003
Year Built: 2006
Subdivision: COLTER CLOSE
City/Town Code: Phoenix
Description: Beautiful 3 bedroom, 3 bathroom gated townhome located in the Colter Close ...
Status: Active
Last Updated: January - 19 - 2020
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