Mesa, home of the strays!!! Stray cats and stray people. You have no rights, except to tolerate them. They will hound you for money or smokes at every bus, light rail stop and fast food place in town. And nothing can be done. Thje cats are more entitled than people. If you do anything except pay to have them removed and taken care of it is a FELONY. I moved here to enjoy my retirement in a nicer climate. SELLING and going anywhere. This is beyond crazy. When bums and unwanted animals have more rights than tax paying "hard working" citizens. Save yourself, I would advise not even visiting Mesa. Good luck and do serious research befor you move. ~ Eddie
I have lived in Mesa, AZ, for extended periods of time for work purposes over portions of 15 years, and so this city in the Est Valley region of Phoenix has become a second home to me. Mesa is an incredibly diverse and large suburb as it has pockets of poverty as well as upscale gated communities. In other words, don't be surprised by anything you see here.
In many respects, Mesa, AZ typifies middle class suburbia. It's not snooty like its more famous neighbor to the northeast, Scottsdale, and it's not ultra trendy like its immediate neighbor to the east, Tempe. If you're looking for a somewhat quite and normal life, this is the place for you.
For those looking to relocate to Mesa, the primary area to avoid is the general area of older single family homes near Central Avenue and University Avenue and some of the streets east and west of Central headed toward the Mesa Post Office. Here one will find pockets of crime along with run-down homes. Drive several blocks in any direction, however, and you will find perfectly hospitable neighborhoods that would do anyone proud.
The best neighborhoods in town are located east of Gilbert Road for multiple family dwellings and south of the Superstition Freeway for single family homes. Shopping is great for everyday needs with multiple locations of Fry's and Basha's food stores throughout the town. Mesa Riverview is a decent mall for smaller chain stores, but if you're looking for somewhere to spend an afternoon, avoid the outdated Fiesta Mall and go to Scottsdale or Tempe.
Restaurants here are outstanding, from the southwest-inspired Blue Adobe on Country club Drive to Vito's Pizza and Italian Ristorante on Lindsay Road.
Mesa has changed a lot in the past twenty years. I will say first off that I do not recommend Mesa to anyone with kids who will be attending public schools, for that matter I would recommend against 80% of Arizona public schools; for everyone else though Mesa is a great option if you are looking for value and a central location. Mesa is basically set up on an East/West grid, with West Mesa being "old" Mesa. While there is a downtown area that some might find appealing, the real benefit to living in West Mesa is its proximity to the West Valley. Tempe, Scottsdale and Phoenix are all just a short drive away via I-10 or the 202 freeways. While North Phoenix, Scottsdale and downtown Tempe are obvious choices for people looking for an active nightlife, Mesa offers a great value and easy access to those locations.
East Mesa... well I'll leave that alone, except to say go a little farther East and move to Gilbert or Chandler.
Mesa is not the place for anyone, especially those with kids. Mesa is dirty, expensive and not worth the money you spend. Your tax dollars do not go toward education. Due to this fact, we are nationally ranked 48th out of 50 states. Although the weather is nice, there are a lot of homes less and snowbirds who do not care about the state. The homeless sleep everywhere and want handouts from everyone, including childern playing on the playground. Additionally, snowbirds (those who own a house in Arizona but only live in it 6 months out of the year) trash our city, drive to slow and cause accidents. As an Arizona native I would not recommend the Phoenix- metro area to anyone except maybe retirees.
I was born in Mesa, Arizona, but moved away when I was only three years old. My mom, however, grew up there and all of her family still lives in Mesa or surrounding cities, so I visit Mesa often, up to three or four times a year, and become very sad when it is time to leave that hot, wonderful city.
I love to see the designs and art on the cement walls along the freeway. Mesa has a great way of beautifying the city. There are geckos, cacti, and indian-type patterns sculpted and painted on the freeway. When I have flown to Mesa, I can't help but notice the beautiful blue pools in nearly every backyard. Mesa definitely has a way with pleasing the eye.
While the areas surrounding the freeways are beautiful, the traffic on the freeways in Mesa is often horrendous. Rush hour is not just one hour. It usually lasts for three to four hours in both the morning and the evening. During rush hour, traffic is usually at a stand still, and when the cars are able to move, the only creep along. Even when it's not rush hour, freeway drivers are still crazy. It is better to stay away from the freeway when you can. There are also pools everywhere because of the heat. During the summer months, you want to stay inside at all hours of the day, unless you go out in the morning or at night to take a dip in the pool. People get bored staying home, but luckily there are some great malls in Mesa, like Fiesta Mall, that people are able to hang around in, staying cool. Mesa is a great place to visit, but try to avoid the summer heat.
Mesa, Arizona, has been home for me since I finished college in 2002. Less than an hour from Phoenix, Mesa is part of a major metropolitan area. There is crime in Mesa, but no more than in an average city of its size. Mesa is equally close to beautiful places for hiking, kayaking, canoeing, horseback riding, and camping.
There are always things to do in Mesa, and it is not limited to outdoor adventures. Mesa is rich in history, culture, arts, and hospitality. Enjoy authentic Mexican food at Tortas La Presa restaurant. The Mesa Arts Center is breathtaking and offers the best place in the city for enjoying beautiful artworks.
Go shopping at the Mesa Riverview located at Dobson Road and Highway 202. However, if you are looking for high end items, there are more choices available in Phoenix. For nightlife, my favorite spot is Hollywood Alley. It's privately owned and known for a certain unique charm.