Scottsdale Update - Nov. 13, 2023

Scottsdale City Council begins examining draft sustainability plan at today’s Work Study Session. Scottsdale is making strides toward a more sustainable, resilient and thriving future by developing its Community Sustainability Plan, a commitment outlined in the city's 2021 and 2022 Organization Strategic Plans and an integral part of the city’s 2035 General Plan. The council will discuss several draft elements of the plan, including its introduction, air quality and water sections. Draft sections on energy, waste and heat will be addressed in March. The session is part of the Monday, Nov. 13, council meeting which begins at 5 p.m. at Scottsdale City Hall, 3939 N. Drinkwater Blvd. View the agenda item (pdf). Learn more.

The city uses geographic technology to analyze, store and visualize data related to a physical location. GIS Day is Wednesday – learn how this technology impacts our lives and is applied in emergency response, social services, planning, administration and more by attending a free program from 1-3 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 15, at Civic Center Library, 3939 N. Drinkwater Blvd. 

Here's just one example of how the city successfully used GIS: With hundreds of thousands of visitors to the WM Phoenix Open golf tournament each February, the TPC Scottsdale becomes a city within the city. The Scottsdale GIS team and Scottsdale Police and Fire departments worked together to create a digital map application that updates every 30 seconds, showing the location and status of onsite first responders. When seconds matter, this allowed the city to dispatch crews nearest to each incident and provided first responders advanced maps of the venue -- enabling the quickest path to those in need. The system enabled Scottsdale’s Emergency Operations Center staff to identify areas experiencing the highest volume of activity, allocate paramedic units and track each type of emergency in real-time. 

Leave no trace in the preserve. With the holiday season upon us and more people throughout Scottsdale, we remind everyone to leave no trace in Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve. Protect it as a natural space for people and wildlife to enjoy. The obvious items not to leave include dog waste, litter and graffiti. Please don’t leave holiday decorations either. While festive and fun, these items can be hazardous to wildlife and go against our leave no trace policy. Enjoy the desert's natural decorations such as the occasional quartz rock, a late blooming cactus or a special glimpse of a happy cardinal.


Get a head start learning about city issues, projects and activities by attending or listening in on the many public meetings we host. Here’s what’s coming up: 

Learn about the responsibilities of city Boards and Commissions and how you can serve.  

Discover how socioeconomic factors impact the effect of Arizona’s extreme heat. ASU’s Assistant Research Professor Melissa Guardaro will share community stories of urban heat, climate equity and potential solutions to reduce heat risk. The free program begins at 5 p.m. Tuesday, November 14, at the Mustang Library, 10101 N 90th St. 

November’s Civil War Roundtable features John Matteson, “The Concord Nurse and the Brooklyn Bard: Alcott and Whitman in Washington.” This free program will examine the Civil War nursing careers of Louisa May Alcott and Walt Whitman. A graduate of Princeton University and Harvard Law School, Matteson is a professor of English and legal writing at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City. His books have received numerous awards, including the Pulitzer Prize for biography for his first book, “Eden’s Outcasts: The Story of Louisa May Alcott and her Father.”

The Scottsdale Civil War Roundtable meets Tuesday, Nov. 14, at Scottsdale Civic Center Library, 3839 N. Drinkwater Blvd. The lecture starts at 6 p.m.; doors open at 5 p.m. for book sales and a speaker meet and greet.

Meet amazing birds of prey that are native to Arizona. Liberty Wildlife presenters will teach participants about the history, habitat, preservation and safety of various animals. Three opportunities are available:

Get a taste of traditional and contemporary Native cuisine. Western Spirit: Scottsdale’s Museum of the West hosts the Arizona Indigenous Culinary Experience 6-9 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 18, in honor of Native American Heritage Month. Enjoy live performances, cooking demonstrations and more. Learn more and purchase tickets.

Monthlong Scottsdazzle holiday celebration kicks off Nov. 25, with the signature Tree Lighting Ceremony and Sing Along. The fun runs 6-9 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 25, at the Scottsdale Waterfront. Stroll among beautifully lit holiday décor and sing along to classic Christmas tunes led by the Scottsdale Community College Orchestra and local celebrities. Sip hot coffee or cocoa, nibble on light bites and engage in general merriment sure to put you in the holiday spirit. The night culminates with the lighting of a 40-foot Scottsdazzle tree. Get all the dazzling details


  • Fall in Love with Scottsdale Civic Center: The city is celebrating the much-anticipated Scottsdale Civic Center remodel — a comprehensive renovation of the area that has served as the city’s civic and signature special event and gathering space for 55 years. This celebration features more than 70 activities taking place in and around the center and throughout Old Town through Wednesday, Nov. 22. 

  • Scottsdale ArtWalk: Scottsdale is home to more than 100 galleries, dedicated to exhibiting the finest visual art from around the world and locally. Stroll at your own pace. 7-9 p.m. Thursdays. Specialty-themed Gold Palette ArtWalks are held 6:30-9 p.m. about once a month. 

Get more events information.


Get fit: Club SAR, the city’s stand-alone fitness center, provides affordable options. Club SAR provides fitness classes such as yoga, spin, barre, kickboxing and rowing, as well as free weights, weight and cardio machines, locker rooms and showers. Annual, three-month and one-month memberships are available for those 14 and older, and daily drop-in use. Learn more about Club SAR.

Low-income seniors invited to apply for funds through a new tenant based rental assistance program. The City Council approved this two-year pilot program in May, which is funded through the HOME investment partnership. The program will accept referrals from Granite Reef and Via Linda senior centers and will serve residents 62 and older at or below 30% of the area median income and 50% or more cost burdened by housing expenses. The program intends to serve 10-15 seniors for a minimum of one year with rental subsidy. Learn more by calling the city’s Community Assistance Office at 480-312-7156.


Maricopa County kicks off “Burn Cleaner, Burn Better” campaign. Burning wood in a fireplace, chiminea or fire pit provides a warm cozy gathering place, but it also generates air pollution that can be harmful to your health. In addition, higher levels of air pollution caused by wood burning smoke, especially during the winter months, can put the county at risk of not meeting federal health standards.

Wood burning alternatives are acceptable to use on "no burn days,” and they still provide an inviting, warm fire glow while reducing harmful smoke pollution. Safer options include gas and electric fireplaces, fireplace retrofit devices, and pellet and EPA-certified wood stoves. Learn more and how you can help.  

Old Town project recognized for historic preservation efforts. The Arizona Preservation Foundation and Arizona State Historic Preservation Office recognized The Kiva Craft Center Rehabilitation Project (pdf),7121 E. 5th Ave., with a 2023 Governors Heritage Preservation Honor Award. The mission of the award is to promote public awareness of historic preservation in Arizona and recognize the people and projects that demonstrate excellence in design and execution of historic preservation.

Scottsdale residents take it to the street with record cleanup. Eighty-four Adopt-a-Road groups worked together on National Make A Difference Day Oct. 28, cleaning the roadways of Scottsdale. More than 500 volunteers cleaned about 160 miles of roadway and removed more than two tons of trash. Each group selects a roadway to clean three times per year. Learn more about the program.

Scottsdale Chamber of Commerce honors business community with Sterling Awards. These award winners showcase business excellence, innovation and community stewardship:

  • Micro Business (1-10 employees) recognizes an emerging business exhibiting success through innovation, creativity and collaboration: Suzi Glover, State Farm Insurance

  • Small Business (11-75 employees) recognizes a small company demonstrating innovation, quality, professionalism and commitment to community: MegaplanIT Holdings LLC

  • Big Business (76+ Employees) recognizes a large company making a significant impact on the lives of its employees and the economic fabric of the community: Riot Hospitality Group

  • Nonprofit recognizes a charitable organization contributing to the social, cultural, educational well-being of its constituents: Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale

Job of the Week: Police Aides: Police aides respond to police dispatch-based calls for service, conduct investigations and write reports for a variety of calls not requiring police officer presence. Benefits include 12 paid holidays; sick leave; medical, dental and vision benefits; paid parental leave; tuition reimbursement; participation in Arizona State Retirement System; and more. Learn more and apply.


Scottsdale What Works Cities 2023 Gold certification

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