Wednesday, July 30, 2014



Flower Power

Downtown activists have come up with a creative use for the city’s desolate dirt lots: blooms for biofuel.

The only thing that flourishes on the dusty two-acre lot near Sixth and McKinley streets in Downtown Phoenix is blight. But that’s about to change. More than 20,000 bright yellow sunflowers are poised to bloom there, transforming the space into a so-called Valley of the Sunflowers.


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Food Fight

Sky Harbor Airport’s Terminal 4 will soon be loaded with local eateries, but behind the scenes of the competitive bidding process, tensions are simmering.

Thirty-eight million travelers passed through Phoenix Sky Harbor last year, with approximately 80 percent of them trekking through Terminal 4, robotically snacking on overpriced Cinnabon rolls and reheated Pizza Hut pepperoni slices.


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Dear Mayor...

As Phoenix elects a new mayor, we’ve asked Valley movers and shakers to give the next leader an action plan for taking the city to the next level.

Dear Future Mayor
of Phoenix,

As you know, you’re taking the helm of America’s sixth largest city at a pivotal time. The state has been weakened by budget woes, Downtown is pocked with empty lots and abandoned businesses, and foreclosures run like fissures through the former backbone of our economy.


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¶lim¶Valley Doomsday Preppers

From 2012 doomsday survivalists to closet ‘preppers,’ more and more of our neighbors are secretly stockpiling food, water and weapons to guard against an approaching enemy: us, the unprepared.


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¶lim¶Hells Angels Shootout

After a fierce shootout last year in Chino Valley between members of the Hells Angels and rival bikers the Vagos, it seems a turf battle is brewing. Could Phoenix be a future battleground?

It was a peaceful Saturday morning like any other for Terrance and Judy Schafman – that is, until the outlaw biker gun battle erupted across the street.


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New Desert Park and Preserve

Northwest Valley residents have long been deprived of sweeping desert park land and paint ball facilities. That’s about to change.

Imagine one of Maricopa County’s biggest stretches of unspoiled desert and Western heritage as a perfectly drawn, dusty canvas begging to be hiked, biked and camped on. Now, add major nesting sites for raptors, indigenous plant life and rock features, and the area quickly becomes a laid-back, Old West counterpart to the hectic motorized mania of Lake Pleasant.


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Mesa Monster Museum

The couple behind Mesa’s Midnight Studios FX has constructed creatures for some of the Valley’s most famous fright sites. Now they’re doing it their way.

Kyle and Breanna Thompson’s newest project looks inconspicuous from the outside – as inconspicuous as a downtown Mesa Main Street storefront with a black curtain, faux-iron bars and monsters leering out of it can look.


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