Phoenix Neighborhoods and Districts
Downtown Phoenix is not only the Valley’s center for business and culture, but it is a collection of unique neighborhoods and districts. From the burgeoning art scene down Roosevelt Row and Grand Avenue, to the funky restaurants of Evans-Churchill, as well as wonderful housing options in some of Phoenix’s oldest neighborhoods like Garfield, Willo and Grant Park. Downtown Phoenix truly has it all. Please acquaint yourself with Downtown Phoenix’s different districts and see what they have to offer.
Since its beginning as Center Street dating back to the founding of the city, Central Avenue has maintained its iconic status as the Valley’s “Main Street.” From stagecoaches and saloons in the pioneer days, to convertibles and the Valley’s first mall in the 1950’s, Central Avenue has added high-rises and cultural attractions to its surroundings. Ride the METRO light rail through downtown and check out the restaurants, theaters, Phoenix Art Museum, Burton Barr Central library and other cultural attractions located along this “Main Street.”
Rooted firmly in the City Beautiful movement of planning, the Palmcroft and Encanto Districts were developed starting in the late 1920’s. With winding lanes, tree-lined streets, lush landscaping and nearby Encanto Park, this neighborhood resembles more of an English suburb than a Phoenician neighborhood. The district contains many larger, period revival manors, marking a time when it was a getaway from the hustle and bustle of early city life.
The Evans-Churchill neighborhood lies directly adjacent to the downtown core. With a mix of historic single-family homes and infill mid-rise developments, this neighborhood serves as a transitional area between the dense core of downtown and the surrounding historic districts. Evans-Churchill is home to Roosevelt Row—a burgeoning arts scene from 7th Street to Grand Avenue along Roosevelt Street that draws thousands of visitors every month. Also, Evans-Churchill abuts the Phoenix Biomedical Campus, with opportunities for some biomedical support services.
Developed in the 1920’s as a typical “streetcar suburb,” F.Q. Story contains a great mix of neatly restored period revival and bungalow homes. The neighborhood takes its name from Francis Quarles Story, a merchant and grower who is credited with creating the famous Sunkist Orange advertising campaign. Recently, along the northeastern corner of this district, dining and entertainment options have popped up in a redeveloped brick building. Also, Story’s annual home tour offers a great opportunity to view suburban architecture from a different era.
Just to the east of downtown is the Garfield neighborhood. Home to two of the largest historic districts in the city (Garfield and North Garfield), this area is undergoing a tremendous revitalization as evidenced by the rehabilitation of homes built between the 1890’s and 1930’s, as well as contemporary infill condo projects . Garfield is an attractive choice for faculty, researchers and students from the nearby educational facilities.
Not hard to miss on any map of the city, Grand Avenue’s diagonal course breaks up the near perfect grid; and the neighborhood that surrounds the thoroughfare’s terminus in downtown is just as quirky. Located between Roosevelt and Van Buren Streets, the neighborhood is bustling with local businesses operating out of converted warehouses, homes and auto dealerships. Art galleries, funky bars and local boutiques now occupy many of the restored storefronts. The Grand Avenue triangle is another component of the greater downtown neighborhood that makes it unique within the Valley.
Greater Coronado covers approximately 1-1/2 square miles and includes about 5,000 households. Three historic districts --Brentwood, Coronado, and Country Club Park-- make up much of the neighborhood. Hundreds of small businesses thrive on our periphery. The western side of the neighborhood was constructed largely between 1920 and 1930 and reflects the California Bungalow and Spanish Colonial revival building styles; the northern side is predominantly the ranch styles common of the 1940s.
In the northwestern portion of the downtown redevelopment area lies Phoenix’s first neighborhood to be designated historic. Designed in the typical streetcar neighborhood style of its time, the Roosevelt Historic District offers an eclectic mix of period revival and bungalow-style homes, historic landmarks such as Kenilworth Elementary School and Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, as well as various contemporary infill developments.
With Chase Field, home of the Arizona Diamondbacks, and US Airways Center, home of the Phoenix Suns and Phoenix Mercury, various bars and restaurants, the Warehouse District is truly a unique blend of uses and aesthetics that remind us of what Downtown Phoenix began as, and gives a glimpse of what it will be in the future.
Just to the north of downtown between Central Avenue and 7th Avenue, from McDowell to Thomas Roads, Willo is one of the largest historic districts in the city. Showcasing a variety of architectural styles, neatly manicured lawns, and palm tree- and lamp-lined streets, Willo has become a model of historic neighborhood preservation and organization. The neighborhood is host to various home tours and holiday celebrations, and also has various retail and dining options near its southwest corner at 7th Avenue and McDowell Road.