Decades ago, when seasonal rains would send water down from the mountains and desert and flood Hayden Road on both sides, rendering the street impassable. Rather than create a Los Angeles River-like cement canal to move the stormwater, Scottsdale developed a long park with golf, lakes, an aquatics and fitness center, hiking and biking trails, sports courts, and baseball fields with backstops that would open to accommodate the flowing water. When the water seeped into the aquifer, the park remained. It was classic “let’s build it better.”
Now it is a feature Scottsdale is known for, with families, young adults, children, and visitors spending calm and fun sunny days in the pastoral ambiance. And it’s walking distance to miles of neighborhoods from fine master-planned communities like McCormick Ranch to the old red bricks from Camelback south, to trendy news condo and other projects a rock’s throw away.
It’s a feature unique to Scottsdale in Arizona, a fabulous park surrounded by neighborhoods, and it’s still growing southward toward the Salt River, adding amenities along the way.
The neighborhoods around the green belt — in addition to the parks and ambiance of what would be Scottsdale’s Central Park — have easy access also to Downtown Scottsdale with its Old Town tourism and festival center, the Arts District, Scottsdale Waterfront, restaurants, shopping, and nightlife, while still living in a traditionally quiet suburban neighborhood.
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