We are all aware the U.S. economy has been hit quite hard recently, but according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the State of Arizona’s unemployment rate remains below the national rate of 9.7%, holding at 9.6%. The City of Phoenix is in better shape, with a current unemployment rate of 9.2%, as of March 2010- http://www.bls.gov/eag/eag.az_phoenix_msa.htm. In addition, did you know that despite the nation’s bleak economic condition, the City of Phoenix’s overall cost of living is 13% below the national average, and Arizona’s personal income tax structure is among the lowest in the nation?
While new development projects across the state and the country have slowed, Downtown Phoenix continues to benefit from a high level of economic development. From 2006 to 2011, over $4 billion in private and public funds will have been invested in the Downtown area alone. Notable projects include the Valley Metro Light Rail system, ASU Downtown Campus, Phoenix Biomedical Campus and the recent $600 million expansion of the Phoenix Convention Center. In additon, nearly 4,000 residential units have also been added.
Although Arizona has experienced a drop in housing values, and has one of the highest foreclosures rates in the country, Dowtown has experienced a much lower decrease in housing values, compared to most cities in the Phoenix metro area. For example, the Encanto-Palmcroft Historic District currently has four properties for sale over $1 million, as of April 1st, 2010. A total of five property sales are pending, three of which, are over $500,000.
So how does this information benefit the average resident of the Downtown area? Let me answer it this way. Consider those of us that live in Downtown Phoenix lucky!