Graphic program of just one area of the Tempe downtown proposed in PPS' Urban Open Space framework, which comprised a fabric of more than 30 connected destinations

In 2006, PPS was hired by the city of Tempe to create a comprehensive open space plan for their downtown, which has experienced rapid growth in recent years. The plan proposed improvements for more than 30 places that made up the fabric of the downtown experience in order to create a more lively, pedestrian friendly environment with a great mix of destinations.

With the economic downturn, much of the exciting new mixed-use development being planned for the downtown has been put on hold. But Tempe’s planners understand that now is the time to plan for their public spaces, because it is just these types of spaces that will attract people and companies to downtown Tempe once the recovery takes  hold.

From an Op-Ed piece in The Arizona Republic: “City leaders are reviving the [open space] plan, saying it’s even more important during this down time to plan for and invest in public-space projects. They’re right. If these building blocks are securely in place once the economy recovers, Tempe runs much less risk of being blindsided by developments downtown and along light rail.”

Visit our website for more information about the new plans for Tempe’s downtown.  On a related subject, check out a recent article from the PPS newsletter, How Your Community Can Thrive–Even in Tough Times.