Mesa Mayor Scott Smith, right, with federal officials at the new Able Engineering facility, announcing an Obama administration initiative to boost manufacturing.
Mesa has landed an Apple factory and 2,000 jobs (provided the Gilbert school board goes along with the tax incentives), the latest in a series of triumphs as Phoenix falls into eclipse and the big issues are "pension spiking" and the "food tax."
Is "the city of wide streets and narrow minds" finally starting to punch at its weight?
Unlike most of the "boombergs" that have encircled Phoenix despite the aggressive annexation intended to prevent just that, Mesa always had a special identity. Settled by Mormons, Mesa had a distinctive set of small-businesses and agriculture-based industries and was surrounded by miles of citrus groves.
This began to change in the 1970s when the Superstition Freeway, as it built east, killed Main Street shops. Worse, the city inflicted a series of wounds on itself even as it notched huge population growth.