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Below is some general information about Phoenix:
Phoenix is the capital, and largest city, of the U.S. state of Arizona, as well as the sixth most populous city in the United States of America, and is also the most populous state capital in the United States and most populated inland city. Phoenix is home to 1,445,632 people according to the 2010 U.S. Census Bureau data. It is the anchor of the Phoenix metropolitan area (also known as the Valley of the Sun) and is the 12th largest metro area by population in the United States with about 4.2 million people in 2010. In addition, Phoenix is the county seat of Maricopa County and is one of the largest cities in the United States by land area. Phoenix was incorporated as a city in 1881, after being founded in 1861 near the Salt River close to its confluence with the Gila River. The city has a notable and famous political culture and has been home to numerous influential American politicians and other dignitaries, including Barry Goldwater, William Rehnquist, John McCain, Carl Hayden, and Sandra Day O’Connor. Residents of the city are known as Phoenicians. Located in the northeastern reaches of the Sonoran Desert, Phoenix has a subtropical desert climate. In summer, average high temperatures are typically over 100 °F (38 °C).
The early economy of Phoenix was primarily agricultural, dependent mainly on the “5Cs” which were copper, cattle, climate, cotton and citrus. In the last four decades most of the farmlands have been turned into suburbs, and the economy has diversified as swiftly as the population has grown. The construction boom collapsed in 2008, as the financial crisis of 2007–2010 began; housing prices plunged. As Phoenix is the state capital, many residents in the area are employed by the government. Arizona State University has also enhanced the area’s population through education and its growing research capabilities. Numerous high-tech and telecommunications companies have also recently relocated to the area. Due to the warm climate in winter, Phoenix benefits greatly from seasonal tourism and recreation, such as the golf industry.
Phoenix has maintained a growth streak in recent years, growing by 24.2% before 2007. This made it the second-fastest-growing metropolitan area in the United States following only Las Vegas, whose population had grown by 29.2% in that time. In 2008, Phoenix was one of the hardest hit by the Subprime mortgage crisis. In early 2009, the median home price was $150,000, down from its $262,000 peak in recent years. Crime rates in Phoenix have gone down in recent years and once troubled, decaying neighborhoods such as South Mountain, Alhambra, and Maryvale have recovered and stabilized. Recently Downtown Phoenix and the central core have experienced renewed interest and growth, resulting in numerous restaurant, stores and businesses opening or relocating to central Phoenix.
Phoenix is currently home to four Fortune 500 companies: electronics corporation Avnet, mining company Freeport-McMoRan, retailer PetSmart and waste hauler Republic Services. Honeywell’s Aerospace division is headquartered in Phoenix, and the valley hosts many of their avionics and mechanical facilities. Intel has one of their largest sites here, employing about 10,000 employees and 7 chip manufacturing fabs, including the $3 billion state-of-the-art 300 mm and 45 nm Fab 32. American Express hosts their financial transactions, customer information, and their entire website in Phoenix. The city is also home to the headquarters of U-HAUL International, a rental and moving supply company; as well as Best Western, the world’s largest family of hotels; Apollo Group, parent of the University of Phoenix; and utility company Pinnacle West. Choice Hotels International has its IT division and Operations Support Center in the North Phoenix area. US Airways relocated it Corporate Headquarters to Metro Phoenix area (Tempe) in 2005 after being acquired by America West Airlines. US Airways is the largest carrier at Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix. Mesa Air Group, a regional airline group, is headquartered in Phoenix.
As the capital of Arizona, Phoenix houses the state legislature. In 1913, the commission form of government was adopted. The city of Phoenix is served by a city council consisting of a mayor and eight city council members. The mayor is elected in a citywide vote to a four-year term. Phoenix City Council members are elected to four-year terms by voters in each of the eight separate districts that they represent. The current mayor of Phoenix is Greg Stanton, a Democrat who was elected to a four-year term in 2011. The mayor and city council members have equal voting power to adopt ordinances and set the policies that govern the city. Phoenix operates under a council-manager form of government, with a strong city manager supervising all city departments and executing policies adopted by the Council. As of February 9, 2009, Phoenix offers a domestic partnership registry open to opposite- and same-sex couples with no resident requirements for registrants. The city’s website was given a “Sunny Award” by Sunshine Review for its transparency efforts.
Source: Phoenix on Wikipedia