Greg Stanton has seen it all. As a native who has spent most of his years here in the valley, he's seen all that it has to offer. The good, the bad, and the triple-digit summers. He's also seen all that our city has been through and was around before it transformed into what it is today. There was a time when Phoenix was lacking in destination allure, especially downtown. In fact, going downtown was never even a thought, and not to mention doing so at night was basically considered taboo. But around 10 years ago or so things slowly started to shift. The efforts that went into building Phoenix into a flat and spread out valley had literally made a 180 and began making its way back inward towards downtown. While most large cities in the US are built upward resulting in dense inner cities, Phoenix was the exact opposite in that suburban areas were built far and wide throughout the valley like a ripple effect. Making for a very spread out metro area. So spread out in fact that there was no way you could live here without having your own transportation. In short, we definitely didn't look like a city that's ranked 5th or 6th largest in the US.
The past decade has seen tremendous downtown expansion and growth in restaurants, bars, hotels, and entertainment. It's also seen an education boom with Arizona State University and The University of Arizona both introducing campuses to downtown Phoenix. The need for personal transportation has yet to be eradicated (not that it needs to be) however, public transportation options such as the expanding light rail system and bike sharing programs have created new ways for Phoenicians to truly experience an urban lifestyle. And the best part is there's an overwhelming consensus that our young city is just getting started. The momentum and positive energy is a result of Stanton and several other city leaders and community initiatives working together to continue moving Phoenix forward in the direction we all desire to see. In 2017, Stanton was recognized as one of the top public officials of the year for his role in helping to expand our transportation options while reducing the city's greenhouse gas emissions.
And the best is yet to come. These changes are happening fast thanks to those unified efforts. As the saying goes, "Many hands make light work." As for Greg Stanton, his journey will hopefully lead him to US Congress as he begins his 2018 campaign to represent Arizona's 9th district.
Learn more about Greg Stanton here.