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colin

The Creative Economy in Arizona

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Can Tucson attract 'the creative class'?

The article is actually not specific to Tucson but more toward the "un-hip" economies.

It's a valid point. How is Tucson, and Arizona as a whole, going to retain hip 20-somethings like me? :P

Arizonans who graduate from high school here often go to college here as well but usually only for financial reasons. They often can only think of "getting out" after that to more "hip" metros on the coasts.

What sort of incentives can Phoenix offer to retain its creative youth?

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Allow taller buildings for a more distinguished skyline, increase density for more excitement and walkability, and build more multi-use buildings so there's more stuff to do. Provide more shady areas outside. Hold more cultural events outside like Tempe does. Desegregate residential and commercial areas so there's always activity going on everywhere.

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What outdoor cultural festivals does Tempe do?

Do you mean that Tempe Town Lake music thing they do every year?

Does Tempe count as being able to hang on to its "Creative Class"? Seems like a lot of ASU grads leave the Valley for bigger and better things.

Tucson actually has quite a few outdoor cultural events that are quite popular: Tucson Meet Yourself (coming up next month), Tucson Folk Festival, Fireman's Chili Cook-Off (gets a huge crowd), Club Crawl, Big Arizona Music (BAM) Festival, Downtown Saturdays. There have even been a couple of small-scale art crawls recently.

But why Tucson doesn't do something like Phoenix's First Fridays is beyond me. Or have an after-work music festival each week with drinking and food to keep people Downtown. Kind of like what Boise (or, from what I've been told, Charlotte) does.

Whatever.

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There's also the Fiesta Bowl Block Party, and I remember Mill Avenue being shut down once for some kind of a motorcycle show. They also had the Red Bull Flugtag event on Tempe Town Lake.

You bring up a good point about Tempe's creative class. I'm not saying Tempe is perfect, just that there's a thing or two other cities in the valley could learn from them.

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