Letter to Phoenix


Dear Residents of Phoenix,

             I grew up here and to me South Phoenix has always been ďthat placeĒ were bad things happens. It is the place we have been led to believe is a combat zone within our own city. News reporters have unabashedly told us on a nightly basis of murders, race riots in the schools and crime there.  I never had any first hand experience in South Phoenix until I took this class.  This class, learning from South Phoenix, has taught me a great deal about why South Phoenix is the way it is. I also found that the image of South Phoenix portrayed in the nightly news isnít true.    

South Phoenix is a nice change to the visual landscape of the rest of Phoenix. I would encourage anybody that so desires to take a trip to South Phoenix and explore a bit. I found that I enjoyed being in an area that had more personality than many other parts of the city.   It is nice to see neighborhoods where people are free to do with their homes as they like and are not restricted to blandness by the ironclad rules of a homeowners association. There are many different types of architecture to be seen in the building in this part of town.  There are stores and markets where you can try new types of food you might not know about.

              South Phoenix has much to offer Phoenix, but if you are going to go see it you should go now. South Phoenix is a part of town experiencing tremendous change. South Phoenix is increasingly beginning to look like the rest of Phoenix. The process of gentrification and disinvestment in the area that had plagued residents for years is now causing land and home prices to go through the roof.  Cookie cutter developments are springing up in areas that used to be orchards and large houses are popping up on vacant lots. It is becoming increasingly difficult to find affordable housing. Large generic new shopping centers are sprouting out of the ground to compete with smaller local stores.

            Despite the encroachment by developers and big business South Phoenix is continuing to hold onto itís uniqueness for the time being. Whether South Phoenix will retain its original eclectic flavor or be assimilated into the rest of Phoenix remains undetermined. But I for one am hoping that South Phoenix will prosper form the new developments but that they will not come to define it.           






Return to South Phoenix 2005