McDowell Sonoran Preserve Access Areas Plans

What is it?MSP-Access

The report identifies ten locations and four types of planned access areas for the planned McDowell Sonoran Preserve (Preserve) of 36,400 acres. The McDowell Sonoran Preserve Commission prepared the Report to identify the locations and types of access areas that will be needed to provide appropriate access for various users of the City-owned Preserve. Currently, there are thirteen Preserve trail access points, with three more planned. 

Report developed - 1999

Where does it apply?

The ten planned access areas will be located within the boundaries of the planned Preserve, including one location in Fountain Hills.

Why was it developed?

To avoid problems experienced in other communities (such as inadequate parking for the number of trail users) the Preserve Commission felt it was prudent to consider how the City can best provide adequate parking and related trailhead facilities for the anticipated Preserve users. The Commission also wanted to make the public aware of the planned locations and, specifically, to notify current and prospective owners around the Preserve where the access areas are planned.

Key Points:

  1. Planned access areas vary in size and the facilities planned in order to accommodate the variety of users and users’ needs for access and facilities.
  2. Public information on the planned locations for access areas has proven to be very important to Preserve users and neighboring property owners.
  3. Potential Preserve users are eager to see both trails and access areas completed soon, so they will be able to enjoy the Preserve, and new areas will be opening over time.
  4. Sunrise Access Area at the southeast end of the Preserve and the McDowell Mountains was the first planned access area to open.
  5. The planning of trails and access areas in Scottsdale has been coordinated with the plans in surrounding communities and jurisdictions including Fountain Hills, Tonto National Forest, Maricopa County’s McDowell Mountain Regional Park, Carefree and Cave Creek.
  6. The capital improvement schedules for trail construction and access area construction are interdependent - trails are built first, then an access area, and then the trail(s) and access area are officially opened together.
  7. Fountain Hills is responsible for any access areas in their community.

Related Resources:

Contact Information

Scottsdale's McDowell Sonoran Preserve
7447 E. Indian School Rd. Suite 300
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
P: 480-312-7013

Kroy Ekblaw
Preserve Director
P: 480-312-7064
[email protected]

Ruth Johnson
Admin Support
P: 480-312-2304
[email protected]