Phoenix is officially the fifth largest city in America, but in fact, it's simply a massive expanse of concrete and tract housing. Phoenix is different from typical cities such as New York or Chicago in that it is entirely devoid of culture or night life. Many of its inhabitants resort to drug use (i.e. meth
or prescription drugs) and conspicuous consumption to fill their empty lives.
The design of the metropolitan area, or lack there of, has allowed the area to sprawl outward in each direction for about 120 miles in each direction. Commercial and residential developments are massive and kept separate from each other, making it possible for the nearest post office, gas station, or grocery store to be several miles away and your house. Experienced drivers from real cities, will find Phoenix traffic unbearable as most native Phoenix residents have very poor driving skills with a particular affinity for speeding and tail-gating. Residents of new developments must wait years before traffic lights and additional lanes are installed on nearby major roads. Despite the multiple car pile ups that occur in Phoenix daily, the city still allows drivers to talk on their cell phone while driving.
The fast pace of growth has resulted in several social problems. New tract housing developments usually build there own elementary, junior, and even high schools. Consequently, there are an abundance of little independent school districts that receive little over-sight from the city and the means to properly educate students. The lack of social interaction between residents due to sprawl has led to an epidemic of meth addiction. Sprawl has also restricted police to patrol cars only. The police focus their attention on providing speeding tickets in areas with artificially low speed limits. Violent crime and particularly car theft are common.
The weather is very mild during the winter with warm days and cool nights. But it is extremely hot during the rest of the seasons, forcing everyone to live in air conditioning 24 hours a day for eight months of the year.
Phoenix can be divided into roughly four parts: the North, West, South and Downtown. The Northern part of Phoenix is comprised of the historically nouveau riche
enclaves of Paradise Valley and part of Scottsdale which is actually designated as a city itself. The people from these areas like to flaunt their wealth but are in fact heavily in debt,; foreclosures and repossessions are not uncommon here. The Western and Southern parts of Phoenix are comprised of older tract housing...and pretty much nothing else. There is more foot traffic and higher commercial density in Tempe (Southern Phoenix) due to the presence of ASU's campus and the airport. However, the cultural activities and amenities in the area will never be mistaken for anything in a real city. For the most part, bars, fast food chains, and tattoo parlors mix in with older tract housing developments in the area. The downtown of Phoenix is absolutely dead. There are about 40 high-rise buildings that house government offices. These buildings are lit at night to lend a night-scape for the surrounding area during the evening despite the fact that no one is inside them.
Phoenix is a vast expanse of concrete and tract housing.
It you're from the North East, Miami, Chicago, or another real city and enjoy culture then don't move to Phoenix.