This Friday our small group of four women journeyed to the class study area of South Phoenix. This area is located in the area that is bordered by 7th Ave. to the West, the Salt River to the North, 24th Street to the east and south to South Mountain Park.
Refer to the area map by clicking on the Phoenix Bird on the front page. During this course will be gathering data, which represents the current situation regarding "what is going on in this area". My interest is in land use: past, present and future projections.
We stopped and took photographs of the most interesting activities of the changing landscape. As you can see below and interpret that there is no stopping the course of “Big Development”.
On one side of the street a small community that was built in the 1920’s housing Mexican field workers that had migrated from Mexico to work on the large farms that where here in South Phoenix.
We stopped at a fruit stand on Baseline Road. We talked to Chris the owner, who had 19 acres of citrus that has successfully supplied the locals with fruit, nuts and honey for a long time. Just across the street, bulldozers erasing and building new homes. As property values clime I asked Chris if he had been receiving any calls about selling out his land to development. He said he has had a few calls, but nothing serious.
“The Women on the porch”
We experienced many eye-opening events, mainly the changing landscape. The changing identities of each neighborhood, being that of the bulldozers scrapping the land down to bear rock, similar to erasing a black board and starting over with new housing and new people moving in.
What about the people that have lived there before all of this? There was our answer four ladies sitting on their front porch, just like they have been doing every day since 1929. They welcomed us as we approached them. We asked them many questions, like: What do you think of all this change? Anita, said, “too much traffic, not enough restaurants, shopping, etc. Most of her family still lives on this block. I wish we could have stayed longer; they were so nice and had no intention of leaving their humble existence that they are so accustomed to.
Field Report 2/1/02
This week we journeyed to Habitat for Humanity, a planned community near 16th Street south of Southern. There are 195 homes on 40 acres in this community. Families that wish to buy in this community must contribute, 400 hours of "Sweat Equity" and good credit to build and buy a home here. I spent 2 hours on top of a roof pounding nails; I felt a tremendous since of contributing my time to benefit others as well as learning what can be accomplished when a group of people gets together for a great cause.
The sense of community was very evident here, the Stardust House, a community center is the center of this community. Homeowners can take computer classes, language class, the neighborhood come in for play and snacks. I was very impressed and felt welcomed here too.