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Phoenix, city, chair (1871) that Maricopa county and also capital of Arizona, U.S. It lies along the Salt river in the south-central part of the state, about 120 miles (190 km) north of the Mexico border and also midway in between El Paso, Texas, and also Los Angeles, California. The Salt river valley, popularly referred to as the sink of the Sun, contains not just Phoenix but also nearby cities such together Mesa, Scottsdale, and Tempe. Phoenix theatre a prominent role in the economy of the mountain West region of the country, serving together a financial, communications, and also transportation hub. Area 450 square mile (1,165 square km). Pop. (2010) 1,445,632; Phoenix-Mesa-Glendale metro Area, 4,192,887; (2020) 1,608,139; Phoenix-Mesa-Chandler subway Area, 4,845,832.


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Landscape

City site

Phoenix lies close to the confluence that the Gila and also Salt rivers and also is located at the extreme northern part of the Sonoran Desert, one arid environmental zone who characteristic tree is the nationally safeguarded saguaro cactus. To the eastern of Phoenix space the rough Superstition Mountains, a large facility of volcano calderas the formed around 305 million year ago; the mountains reach to about 3,000 feet (900 metres) in ~ their greatest point. The Mazatzal hills rise come the northeast; the Verde flow flows to the west the the mountains, start the Salt River east of Phoenix.

The wide valley in i beg your pardon the city lies extends west come the Colorado River and also south to the hill chains north of Tucson, back the geographic boundaries of Phoenix end far quick of those natural barriers. The Phoenix city area—the sink of the Sun—stands at an elevation of 1,100 feet (335 metres) over sea level. The northern and eastern ends of this valley rise into the surrounding volcanic peaks; the remainder is level terrain, dotted with small volcanic hills of granite and also schist. Camelback Mountain, Squaw Peak, and South hill are the most prominent of these urban peaks, reaching elevations of about 2,600 come 2,700 feet (790 to 820 metres).


The desert floor is alkaline, and the water in the river and also in local wells is saline and contains various other minerals. Plenty of irrigated areas in the Phoenix area are encrusted v dried mineral deposits, i m sorry accumulate and reduce the productivity of the soil. Water is strange abundant, offered the truth that the city lies in one of the most arid areas on the continent; the valley overlies a subterranean sedimentary key that have the right to hold vast quantities of groundwater. However, these stores have actually been significantly depleted, and Phoenix progressively has involved depend top top water native the Colorado flow via the main Arizona job (CAP), an man-made waterway 336 mile (541 km) long expanding from Lake Havasu top top the California border come Tucson. In addition, water native subterranean stores is piped right into the valley from far areas. In the past, virtually every one of the region’s water was used for farming purposes, although raising share is now apportioned for municipal use.

Climate

Phoenix has actually a dry, heat climate that in the winter months attracts tens of hundreds of visitors. The average everyday high temperature in the winter approaches 70 °F (21 °C), yet summer highs typically rise to much more than 100 °F (38 °C). That is nearly always sunny throughout the year.

Precipitation averages much less than 8 inch (200 mm) annually, divided practically evenly in between the winter and summer months. In summertime, the so-called monsoon season, lot of this precipitation returns to the atmosphere virtually immediately v evaporation or transpiration.

None that the hills ringing Phoenix to the north and east will an key high sufficient to attract much moisture. The city depends practically wholly top top groundwater the flows native the Salt and also Gila rivers, and also supplemental water brought in through aqueducts via the CAP.

City layout

Until reasonably recently, some three-fifths the the land within the Phoenix city limits was undeveloped. In the mid-1970s a plan was suggest to build these vacant lands through a routine of “infill” construction, taking benefit of the facilities that was already in place. Instead, however, the city pursued a policy of linking surrounding communities, broadening outward to accommodate its cultivation population.

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Phoenix has actually grown to absorb plenty of satellite communities, and it is surrounding by other independent municipalities that have boomed on your own. These include Scottsdale, an affluent area recognized for that is shopping and also art districts, to the northeast; fountain Hills, an exclusive ar in the hills east of Scottsdale; Tempe, a middle-class suburb that is home to Arizona State University, to the east and Mesa, the “Mormon capital of Arizona,” farther east; Chandler, wherein a high-technology centre has emerged, to the southeast; the once-small agricultural communities of Gilbert and Queen Creek eastern of Chandler; Glendale, Goodyear, and Avondale to the west; and also Sun City, one of the an initial retirement neighborhoods in the country, to the northwest.