Hey folks - Happy July! I've been gone for awhile, and on vacation for the last 10 days in fact, yet I have had absolutely nothing to post. But, in that time I've been doing lots of thinking and dreaming. On the thinking front, I've been thinking an awful lot about this tiny town I live in. Maricopa, AZ is small town. Some facts:
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,040 people, 292 households, and 226 families residing in the CDP.
The city was officially incorporated on October 15, 2003, becoming the 88th incorporated city in Arizona. The city's first special census was completed Saturday, March 13, 2004, and showed a population of 4,998.
Right now, Maricopa's main attraction is the Fry's Marketplace. We also have a Walgreens and a CVS, and several gas stations (only one of which my husband will allow me to stop at after the sun goes down). We have no Walmart, no Target, no McDonalds. We do, however, have Fast Food galore! On the list: Panda Express, Carl's Jr, Jack in the Box, Taco Bell, Arby's, KFC, and Sonic. Oh, you want to sit down? We have those restaurants, too, but no major chain restaurants, just local dives.
You must be thinking - holy moly - what has the Right Wife gotten herself into?? No Target!?!?! Gasp, horror, shock!
Folks, we are not living in the sticks here. Maricopa is literally 30 minutes south of Phoenix by Freeway.
What even got me thinking about all of this? Well, the New York Times and a couple of other liberal slanted media outlets had several articles on Maricopa being the poster child for the housing crisis. Yep, according to these articles, I currently live in a ghost town. And by what I have described to you, you must be thinking that indeed I do live in a ghost town.
But, I tend to disagree. Yeah - we don't have a McDonalds, yet. But, it is under construction, and should be open by August. And the Wal-Mart? Oh - that is under construction, too. It is going to be a Super Wal-Mart. Obscenely huge. Should arrive around January 2009 (which sucks in terms of timing, but I guess I can do my shopping outside of Maricopa for the next 6 months). Unfortunately, the Target is a bit farther off. Vestar Development Co. (one of the big dogs in shopping developments in AZ) has the following brochure available for its Maricopa Development at their website : http://www.vestar.com/newsite/PropDev.html
Maricopa Vestar Development - 900,000 Sq Ft.
So - why would Vestar and Wal-mart be coming for a ghost town with a measly population of 4,998 people?
Oh, I guess you could say the population has increased somewhat since the 2004 special census. In 2007 another census was conducted, and even with a cajillion homes sitting empty because investor assholes bought them, the population was still not too shabby:
In fact, according to county estimates, the population of the city was 33,923 as of July 1, 2007. And judging by the traffic on the 347 on the way to work in the morning, and the ever increasing lines at all times of the day and night at the Fry's Marketplace in town, the population has not decreased since that time. Moving trucks are in my neighborhood frequently, filling in the previously empty homes. We've got 5 elementary schools, several middle schools, and of course a high school. We've got a Hospital ready to start construction and did I mention that Wal-mart? Lol.
That is ok - at some point down the road, tons of jerks will be sad for not purchasing in Maricopa when they had the chance and the prices were reasonable!