|City of Mesa|
Mesa Arts Center building in downtown Mesa
Location of Mesa in Maricopa County, Arizona
|• Mayor||John Giles (R)|
|• City||138.83 sq mi (359.56 km2)|
|• Land||138.07 sq mi (357.60 km2)|
|• Water||0.76 sq mi (1.96 km2)|
|Elevation||1,240 ft (377.952 m)|
|• Rank||US: 35th|
|• Density||3,686.23/sq mi (1,423.27/km2)|
|• Urban||3,629,114 (US: 11th)|
|• Metro||4,857,962 (US: 11th)|
|Time zone||UTC−7 (MST (no DST))|
|Area code(s)||480 602|
Mesa ( // MAY-sə) is a city in Maricopa County, in the U.S. state of Arizona. It is a suburb located about 20 miles (32 km) east of Phoenix in the East Valley section of the Phoenix Metropolitan Area. It is bordered by Tempe on the west, the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community on the north, Chandler and Gilbert on the south along with Queen Creek, and Apache Junction on the east.
Mesa is the largest suburban city by population in the United States,the third-largest city in Arizona after Phoenix and Tucson, the 35th-largest city overall in the US, and the largest city that is not a county seat. The city is home to 518,012 people as of 2019 according to the Census Bureau, which makes it more populous than major cities such as Minneapolis, St. Louis, or Miami. Mesa is home to numerous higher education facilities including the Polytechnic campus of Arizona State University. It is also home to the largest relief airport in the Phoenix area, Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport, which is located in the southeastern corner of the city.
The history of Mesa dates back at least 2,000 years to the arrival of the Hohokam people. The Hohokam, whose name means "All Used Up" or "The Departed Ones", built the original canal system. The canals were the largest and most sophisticated in the prehistoric New World. Some were up to 90 feet (27 m) wide and 10 feet (3.0 m) deep at their head gates, extending for as far as 16 miles (26 km) across the desert. By A.D. 1100 water could be delivered to an area over 110,000 acres (450 km2), transforming the Sonoran Desert into an agricultural oasis. By A.D. 1450, the Hohokam had constructed hundreds of miles of canals many of which are still in use today.
After the disappearance of the Hohokam and before the arrival of the early settlers little is known, as explorers did not venture into this area. By the late 19th century near present-day Mesa, U.S. Army troops relocated the Apache, opening the way for settlement.
Mormon pioneer Daniel Webster Jones, with Henry Clay Rogers as his right-hand man, left St. George, Utah in March 1877. Jones had been asked by Mormon officials to direct a party of people in establishing a settlement in Arizona. They traveled south and settled on the north side of the present Mesa area. This settlement was initially known as Fort Utah and later as Jonesville. It was located about where Lehi Road is now. In 1883 it was named Lehi at the suggestion of Brigham Young, Jr.
About this same time, another group dubbed the First Mesa Company arrived from Utah and Idaho. Their leaders were named Francis Martin Pomeroy, Charles Crismon, George Warren Sirrine and Charles I. Robson. Rather than accepting an invitation to settle at Jones' Lehi settlement, they moved up onto the mesa that serves as the city's namesake. They dug irrigation canals and used some of the original Hohokam canals. By April 1878, water was flowing through them.The Second Mesa Company arrived in 1879 and settled to the west of the First Mesa Company because of more available farmland. This settlement was called originally called Alma and later Stringtown. It was located about where Alma School Road is now.
On July 17, 1878, Mesa City was registered as a 1-square-mile (2.6 km2) townsite. The first school was built in 1879. In 1883, Mesa City was incorporated with a population of 300 people. Dr. A. J. Chandler, who would later go on to found the city of Chandler, worked on widening the Mesa Canal in 1895 to allow for enough flow to build a power plant. In 1917, the city of Mesa purchased this utility company. The revenues from the company provided enough for capital expenditures until the 1960s. During the Great Depression, WPA funds provided paved streets, a new hospital, a new town hall and a library.
After the founding of the city the elected official that most impacted the municipality was George Nicholas Goodman. He was mayor 5 different timesin parts of 3 different decade (1938–1942, 1946–1948, 1952–1956) (see: List of mayors of Mesa, Arizona). As mayor he was directly involved in the process of acquiring land for both Falcon Field and Williams Field.
With the opening of Falcon Field and Williams Field in the early 1940s, more military personnel began to move into the Mesa area. With the advent of air conditioning and the rise of tourism, population growth exploded in Mesa as well as the rest of the Phoenix area. Industry—especially early aerospace companies—grew in the 1950s and 1960s. As late as 1960, half of the residents of Mesa made a living with agriculture, but this has declined substantially as Mesa's suburban growth continued on track with the rest of the Phoenix metro area.
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Due to Mesa's extremely long east to west travel distance, in excess of 18 miles (29 km) and large land area 133.13 square miles (344.8 km2), locations in Mesa are often referred to as residing within either Mesa or East Mesa.
Mesa employs a grid system for street numbering that is different from that used in Phoenix and other portions of the metropolitan area. Center Street, running north to south, bisects Mesa into eastern and western halves and serves as the east and west numbering point of origin within Mesa. Streets west of Center St., such as W. University Drive or W. Main St. are considered to be in West Mesa, whereas streets east of Center St., such as E. University or E. Main St., are considered to be in East Mesa.
Mesa Drive, running north to south and bisecting Mesa into east and west sections, is located 0.5 miles (800 m) east of Center Street, and serves as the zip code boundary between the 85281, 85201, 85202, and 85210 zip codes of Western Mesa and the 85203, 85204, 85205, 85206, 85207, 85208, 85209, 85212, 85213, 85215, 85220, and 85242 zip codes of Eastern Mesa.
Country Club Drive, running north to south and bisecting Mesa into east and west sections, is located 0.5 miles (800 m) west of Center St, and serves as the jurisdictional boundary between Arizona's 5th and 6th congressional districts. Note that this same road (as Arizona Avenue) serves as the official east and west numbering point of origin within the city of Chandler, located south of Mesa.
Located in the Sonoran Desert, Mesa has a hot desert climate (Köppen: BWh), with mild winters and very hot summers. The hottest month is July, with an average high of 106 °F (41 °C) and an average low of 77 °F (25 °C). The coldest month is December, with an average high of 67 °F (19 °C) and an average low of 40 °F (4 °C).
|Climate data for Mesa, Arizona|
|Record high °F (°C)||89|
|Average high °F (°C)||67|
|Average low °F (°C)||41|
|Record low °F (°C)||15|
|Average precipitation inches (mm)||1.01|
|Source: The Weather Channel|
|Climate data for Mesa|
|Mean daily daylight hours||10.0||11.0||12.0||13.0||14.0||14.5||14.0||13.5||12.5||11.5||10.5||10.0||12.2|
|Source: Weather Atlas|
|U.S. Decennial Census|
According to the 2010 Census, the racial composition of Mesa was as follows:
As of the census of 2010, there were 439,041 people, 146,643 households, and 99,863 families residing in the city. The population density was 3,171.3 people per square mile (1,224.4/km2). There were 175,701 housing units at an average density of 1,405.7 per square mile (542.8/km2).
The racial make-up of the city was 81.6% White, 2.4% Black or African American, 2.2% Native American, 2.00% Asian, 0.10% Pacific Islander, 9.3% from other races, and 1.30% from two or more races. 24.0% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 146,643 households out of which 33.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.7% were married couples living together, 10.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.9% were non-families. 24.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.68 and the average family size was 3.20.
The age distribution was 27.3% under 18, 11.2% from 18 to 24, 29.7% from 25 to 44, 18.4% from 45 to 64, and 13.3% who were 65 or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females, there were 98.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.6 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $42,817, and the median income for a family was $49,232. Males had a median income of $35,960 versus $27,005 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,601. About 6.2% of families and 8.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 10.7% of those under age 18 and 7.1% of those age 65 or over.
According to the City's 2019 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report,the top employers in the city are:
|#||Employer||# of employees|
|1||Banner Health System||8,321|
|2||Mesa Public Schools||8,184|
|3||City of Mesa||4,492|
|6||Drivetime Automotive Group Inc||1,422|
|8||Frys Food Stores||1,338|
|10||The Home Depot||1,137|
Numerous properties in the city are considered to be historical and have been included either in the National Register of Historic Placesor the listings of the Mesa Historic Properties.
Mesa has over 2,280 acres of parkland in the city limits. Its largest is Red Mountain Park which spans 1,146 acres. It includes a lake, playgrounds, a basketball court and a cement volleyball court.
Mesa is home to numerous championship golf courses, including the original course in town, Mesa Country Club. [ citation needed ]This course was founded in the late 1940s by the original leaders of the town, and "Country Club Drive", the most prominent street in Mesa, was at one point the modest entrance to the club.
The Fiesta Mall is located in West Mesa, and owned by Westcor. Its anchors are Sears and Best Buy. It is located near several shopping centers, Mesa's Bank of America,and other retail stores, banks, and restaurants. An expansion of the mall has been planned.
Mesa Riverview is a new outdoor destination retail center in the northwestern corner of the city, near Loop 202 and Dobson Road. At build-out the center will include 1,300,000 square feet (120,000 m2) of retail space. Its anchors include Bass Pro Shops, Cinemark Theaters, Wal-Mart, and Home Depot.
Located in East Mesa is Superstition Springs Business Park.It includes the Superstition Springs Center, a shopping mall owned by Macerich. It features an outdoor amphitheatre and fountain which convert to a stage. Anchor stores at the mall are Dillard's, JCPenney, and Macy's. Mission Community Church, previously known as Superstition Springs Community Church, was initially named after this business park.
Almost all of the city of Mesa is served by public schools operated by Mesa Public Schools; however, a small southern portion is served by the Gilbert Public Schools and the Queen Creek Unified School District, and a small western portion is served by the Tempe Elementary School District and the Tempe Union High School District.
Pilgrim Lutheran School is a Christian Pre-K-8 school of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod in Mesa.
Mesa is home to Mesa Community College, the largest of the Maricopa Community Colleges, which enrolls over 24,000 full and part-time students. The Polytechnic campus of Arizona State University lies in southeast Mesa. This satellite campus enrolls over 6,000 undergraduate and graduate students in scientific and engineering fields. A. T. Still University operates an Osteopathic Medical School in Mesa. The aviation school CAE Global Academy Phoenix is located in Mesa.
After launching a higher education initiative in 2012, Mesa became home to branch campuses of five private, liberal arts institutions: Albright College, Westminster College, Benedictine University, Upper Iowa University and Wilkes University.Two have since left (Albright College and Westminster College), while a third, Wilkes University, recently announced it would move entirely online.
Several area freeways serve the Mesa area, such as U.S. Route 60, locally known as the Superstition Freeway, which runs between Apache Junction and Phoenix. It is also served by SR 87 and bypass loops Loop 101, which skirts the western city limits as the Price Freeway, and Loop 202, which bypasses the city on the north and east. The main east-west arterial road in Mesa is Main Street (former US 60/70/80/89), serving Downtown Mesa. The primary north-south arterials include Country Club Drive, Gilbert Road, and Power Road.
Public transportation in Mesa is provided by Valley Metro via bus and light rail (Valley Metro Rail). The light rail section in Mesa spans about four miles from Sycamore/Main St in the west of the city, through downtown to Mesa Dr/Main St. Until July 2008, Mesa was the largest U.S. city with no public transit service on Sundays, but now has Sunday service available on Routes 40-Apache/Main, 61-Southern, 96-Dobson, 108-Elliot, 112-Country Club/Arizona, 156-Chandler/Williams Field, and 184-Power.
Air service in the city is provided by two airports. Falcon Field, located in the northeastern part of the area, was established as a training field for British RAF pilots during World War II and was transferred to the city at the end of the war. Falcon Field has 605 aircraft based there.Boeing builds the AH-64 Apache attack helicopter at a facility adjoining Falcon Field. Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport is located in the far southeastern area of the city, and provides alternate but limited air service when compared to Sky Harbor International Airport. Phoenix-Mesa Gateway was formerly Williams Gateway Airport, and before that, Williams Air Force Base, which closed in 1993. Williams Gateway was announced as a new Focus City for Allegiant Air. Service started October 25, 2007.
Mesa has five sister cities, as designated by Sister Cities International:
Phoenix is the capital and most populous city in Arizona, with 1,680,992 people. It is also the fifth most populous city in the United States along with being the largest state capital by population, and the only state capital with a population of more than one million residents.
Globe is a city in Gila County, Arizona, United States. As of the 2010 census, the population of the city was 7,532. The city is the county seat of Gila County. Globe was founded c. 1875 as a mining camp. Mining, tourism, government and retirees are most important in the present-day Globe economy.
Chandler is a city in Maricopa County, Arizona, United States, and a suburb of the Phoenix, Arizona, Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). It is bordered to the north and west by Tempe, to the north by Mesa, to the west by Phoenix, to the south by the Gila River Indian Community, and to the east by Gilbert. As of 2019, the population was estimated at 261,165 according to the United States Census Bureau.
Gilbert is a town in Maricopa County, Arizona, United States, located southeast of Phoenix, within the Phoenix metropolitan area. Once known as the "Hay Shipping Capital of the World", it is the sixth-largest municipality in Arizona, and the fifth-largest in the Metropolitan Phoenix Area.
Scottsdale is a city in the eastern part of Maricopa County, Arizona, United States, part of the Greater Phoenix Area. Named Scottsdale in 1894 after its founder Winfield Scott, a retired U.S. Army chaplain, the city was incorporated in 1951 with a population of 2,000. The 2019 population of the city was estimated to be 258,069 according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The New York Times described downtown Scottsdale as "a desert version of Miami's South Beach" and as having "plenty of late night partying and a buzzing hotel scene." Its slogan is "The West's Most Western Town."
Tempe, is a city in Maricopa County, Arizona, United States, with the Census Bureau reporting a 2019 population of 195,805. The city is named after the Vale of Tempe in Greece. Tempe is located in the East Valley section of metropolitan Phoenix; it is bordered by Phoenix and Guadalupe on the west, Scottsdale and the Salt River Pima–Maricopa Indian Community on the north, Chandler on the south, and Mesa on the east. Tempe is also the location of the main campus of Arizona State University.
The Southwestern United States, also known as the American Southwest, Desert Southwest, or simply the Southwest, is the informal name for a region of the western United States. Definitions of the region's boundaries vary a great deal and have never been standardized, though many boundaries have been proposed. For example, one definition includes the stretch from the Mojave Desert in California to Carlsbad, New Mexico, and from the Mexico–United States border to the southern areas of Colorado, Utah, and Nevada. The largest metropolitan areas are centered around Phoenix, Las Vegas, Tucson, Albuquerque, and El Paso. Those five metropolitan areas have an estimated total population of more than 9.6 million as of 2017, with nearly 60 percent of them living in the two Arizona cities—Phoenix and Tucson.
Hohokam was a society located in the North American Southwest, in the areas now part of Arizona and Sonora, Mexico. Hohokam practiced a specific culture, sometimes referred to as Hohokam culture, which has been distinguished by archaeologists. People who practiced this culture can be called Hohokam as well, but more often they are distinguished as Hohokam people to avoid confusion.
The Phoenix Metropolitan Area – often referred to as the Valley of the Sun, the Salt River Valley, or Phoenix Metro – is a metropolitan area, centered on the city of Phoenix, that includes much of the central part of the U.S. state of Arizona. The United States Office of Management and Budget designates the area as the Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), defining it as Maricopa and Pinal counties. As of the Census Bureau's 2017 population estimates, Metro Phoenix had 4,737,270 residents, making it the 10th largest Metropolitan Area in the nation by population. The gross domestic product of the Phoenix Metropolitan Area was $242 billion in 2017, 16th largest amongst metro areas in the United States.
Hohokam Stadium, also known as Dwight W. Patterson Field and formerly Hohokam Park (1997–2013), is a 10,500-seat baseball park located in Mesa, Arizona. The stadium, named for the Hohokam people who occupied the region from approximately AD 1 to the mid-15th century, was completed in January 1997 after the original Hohokam Stadium was demolished. In 2015, it became the spring training home of Major League Baseball's Oakland Athletics. The 2015 stadium and facility refresh was led by Populous.
Phoenix–Mesa Gateway Airport, formerly Williams Gateway Airport (1994–2008) and Williams Air Force Base (1948–1993), is an international airport in the southeastern area of Mesa, Arizona, 20 miles (17 nmi) southeast of Phoenix, in Maricopa County. The airport, owned and operated by the Phoenix–Mesa Gateway Airport Authority, is a reliever airport for Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. It is a base for Allegiant Air. The airport authority is governed by a six-member board: the mayors of the towns of Gilbert and Queen Creek, the mayors of the cities of Mesa, Phoenix and Apache Junction, as well as the tribal governor of the Gila River Indian Community.
Mesa Grande Cultural Park, in Mesa, Arizona, preserves a group of Hohokam structures constructed during the classical period. The ruins were occupied between AD 1100 and 1400 and were a product of the Hohokam civilization that inhabited the Salt River Valley. There the Hohokam constructed an extensive system of water canals. It is one of only two Hohokam mounds remaining in the metro Phoenix area, with the other being the Pueblo Grande Museum Archaeological Park. The site's central feature is a massive ruin of adobe walls and platforms.
The history of Phoenix, Arizona, goes back millennia, beginning with nomadic paleo-Indians who existed in the Americas in general, and the Salt River Valley in particular, about 9,000 years ago until about 6,000 BC. Mammoths were the primary prey of hunters. As that prey moved eastward, they followed, vacating the area. Other nomadic tribes moved into the area, mostly from Mexico to the south and California to the west. Around approximately 1,000 BC, the nomadic began to be accompanied by two other types of cultures, commonly called the farmers and the villagers, prompted by the introduction of maize into their culture. Out of these archaic Indians, the Hohokam civilization arose. The Hohokam first settled the area around 1 AD, and in about 500 years, they had begun to establish the canal system which enabled agriculture to flourish in the area. They suddenly disappeared by 1450, for unknown reasons. By the time the first Europeans arrived at the beginning of the 16th century, the two main groups of native Indians who inhabited the area were the O'odham and Sobaipuri tribes.
Many arterial roads in the Phoenix metropolitan area have the same name in multiple cities or towns. Some roads change names or route numbers across town borders, resulting in occasional confusion. For example, the road known as Apache Boulevard in Tempe continues east as Main Street in neighboring Mesa and then as Apache Trail in Apache Junction. Although Broadway Road maintains the same name through Goodyear, Avondale, Phoenix, Tempe, Mesa, and Apache Junction, each town uses a different reference point for address numbers.
The East Valley is a multi-city region within the Phoenix metropolitan area of Arizona.
The following is a timeline of the history of the city of Phoenix, Arizona, United States.
The following is a timeline of the history of the city of Mesa, Arizona, United States.
The following is a timeline of the history of the area which today comprises the U.S. state of Arizona. Situated in the desert southwest, for millennia the area was home to a series of Pre-Columbian peoples. By 1 AD, the dominant groups in the area were the Hohokam, the Mogollon, and the Ancestral Puebloans. The Hohokam dominated the center of the area which is now Arizona, the Mogollon the southeast, and the Puebloans the north and northeast. As these cultures disappeared between 1000–1400 AD, other Indian groups settled in Arizona. These tribes included the Navajo, Apache, Southern Paiute, Hopi, Yavapai, Akimel O'odham, and the Tohono O'odham.
The City of Mesa Cemetery is a historic cemetery located at 1212 N. Center Street in the city of Mesa, Arizona. It is the final resting place of various notable early citizens of Mesa. Among those who are interred in the cemetery are early pioneers, mayors, businessman, criminals and veterans of the United States Armed Forces.