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City of Tempe

Tempe Location

Tempe has an ideal location.  The city is surrounded by many Valley of the Sun cities.  It is bordered by the city of Phoenix on the west, Scottsdale to the north, Mesa to the east, and Chandler to the south.  Tempe is in the middle of it all. It is located approximately 6 miles from Phoenix and minutes from Sky Harbor International Airport. 

Tempe’s centralized location is easy to access the extensive freeway system that networks the Valley of the Sun.  Tempe covers about 40 square miles.  The city is ideal for those who want to get around.

Tempe Properties

Residents have a wide choice of living environments in the city of Tempe.  The city has a mix of residents from college students to retirees.  This is mix is also seen in the types of properties in the city.  Historic homes, loft-style condominiums, single-family homes, luxury properties on larger lots can be found.  Some homes are centered on the city’s extensive network of parks.  Houses along mature tree-lined streets with old-time characters continue to attract students, faculty, and families.  Tempe has a home that will fit anyone’s needs.

The city’s motto, “More to Explore,” sums up how much this Valley of the Sun’s city has to offer its residents.  Tempe is a suburban community that offers cultural, academic, and economic opportunities.  It is a city with a distinctive and vibrant personality.  The city is a mixing pot, blending high-tech businesses, exciting resorts, college life, and friendly neighborhoods.

Find out now what properties are in Tempe, click here.

Tempe History

Charles Trumbell Hayden founded the area.  Hayden provided ferry service across the Salt River.  He originally named the area “Hayden’s Ferry.”  However, later the town was renamed Tempe.  The story goes to tell that upon arriving and standing on the Salt River bank, a visitor was reminded of a place called Valle of Tempe in Greece. 

When most people think of the city of Tempe, they think of Arizona State University.  It is hard to imagine that this university began in 1885 on a donated five acre cow pasture.  Eventually, the land became the territorial normal (teaching) school.  Today, the campus covers an amazing 700 acres and is located in the center of Tempe.

Tempe Entertainment

A highlight of Tempe is its downtown district.  Most of the buildings line the main street called Mill Avenue.  Visitors will find brick sidewalks, tall shady trees, and 100 year old buildings lining the street.  Mill (as the locals call it) is host to a variety of shops, boutiques, hotels, bars, theater/film venues, and restaurants.  There are nearly 50 different retailers providing Tempe residents with a unique urban experience.  People of all ages enjoy spending time either sipping a cup of coffee/tea and listening to a good band play or strolling the street browsing through the many one of a kind shops.  Entertainment and fun also make Mill the place to go for lively night life.  This concentration of retail businesses has made Mill, voted by locals, one of the best shopping streets in the Valley of the Sun.

Those searching for sports don’t have to go far.  Sun Devil Stadium on the campus of Arizona State University is home to Sun Devil Football and the Fiesta Bowl.  With so many college sports offered at Arizona State University from basketball to wrestling, there is something going on all year round.  During the springtime, the Anaheim Angels, a professional baseball team, take up their spring training games at Tempe’s Diablo Stadium.  It is easy to find a sporting event in Tempe.

Cultural events play an important part of the city of Tempe.  Grady Gammage Memorial Auditorium is located on the campus of Arizona State University.  The auditorium was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and is a spectacular sight.  Many musicals, concerts, speeches, and debates are held in Grady Gammage.  It is easy for Tempe residents to take in entertainment and cultural events without having to leave their city.

“Tech Oasis” is the term Tempe has been given for its huge cluster of high tech and manufacturing companies, who have made the city their home.  Tempe has the highest concentration of high tech firms in Arizona.  There are many opportunities for commercial and retail businesses in Tempe.  Arizona Mills Mall features value oriented stores with a wide selection of entertainment venues.  Tempe residents do not have to leave the city to receive the services and goods they need.

Arizona State University (sometimes referred to as ASU Main, there are two other extended campuses located in other parts of the Valley) is a recognized research university.  It is one of only 62 research universities in the United States.  This research institution offers undergraduate and graduate education and nationally ranked athletic programs.  There are 87 bachelor degrees, 95 master degrees, 48 doctoral or terminal degree programs, and 1 law degree program, available to students.  The campus is home to several libraries, museums with distinctive collections, studios, performing arts spaces, and unsurpassed state of the art scientific and technological laboratories and research facilities.  With such a large campus, the city does cater to its students making is an active, energized place to live. 

Part of Arizona State University’s mission is to set new standards for excellence in undergraduate, graduate, and professional education.  The university focuses on the individual student.  Even though Arizona State University is one of the nation’s largest, it still seeks to prove size is irrelevant when it comes to excellence in academic programs and quality in student life.  This commitment on the part of the university is reflected throughout the city of Tempe.  The small town, friendly feeling is felt when walking its streets.

Even though Tempe has a terrific location near many of the cities in the Valley of Sun, it still remains a close knit college community.  The Annual Spring and Fall Festival of the Arts which line the streets of downtown Tempe are big draws for visitors and residents.  These festivals bring out the small town feel that Tempe is known.  Tempe is a great place to live!

Tempe Outdoor Recreation

Today, although the Salt River doesn’t continuously flow, part of the river has been dammed up (with inflatable rubber dams) to create a manmade lake.  This man-made lake is named Tempe Town Lake.  Residents love to come to the lake and rent a boat.  Spending time on the cool water is a relaxing and fun way to experience the outdoors.

In combination with Tempe Town Lake, the city also created the Rio Salado Project.  This project is a waterfront development that is wrapped around the two-mile Tempe Town Lake.  It is a recreational and commercial facility that spans 5.5 miles.  An equestrian center, picnic sites, playing fields, and trails are all a part of the Rio Salado Project.

Tempe’s hometown attitude can be found at one of its largest parks.  Kiwanis Park is a 125 acre recreational area.  There are soccer and softball fields, volleyball and tennis courts, playgrounds, and armadas.  A 12 acre fishing lake is a big draw for Tempe residents.  Although the large indoor, heated, wave and swimming pool is a real hit for the children.  Family living is found in Tempe.

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