Tucson: Where Solar, Optics and Innovation Shine
Blessed with the natural beauty of the Sonoran Desert and an unsurpassed climate of 360 sunny days a year, Tucsonans embrace a rare lifestyle. Traveling from the valley floor to the 9,157’ Mt. Lemmon summit via a national Scenic Byway traverses seven of the world’s nine life zones. It is one of a select few cities boasting a ballet company, professional theater, symphony, and opera company. The community’s rich cultural heritage contains a unique blend of Native American, Spanish, Mexican and Anglo-American influences, evident in Tucson’s architecture, arts, entertainment and dining.
Greater Tucson has been dubbed “Optics Valley” for its concentration of firms and strength of the U of A program. More broadly, the region hosts and is building emphasis on biotech and other science clusters in the UA Tech Park, BioPark and Innovation Park, branding under the moniker, “Science City.”
Leisure and tourism represent key economic drivers for Tucson, with world-renowned health spas including Miraval and Canyon Ranch, 20 golf courses and numerous natural attractions, museums and cultural heritage.
Population & Age
Census data from 2010 placed Pima County's population at 980,263. Arizona is the nation's seventh-youngest state. The median age in the City of Tucson is 32.5, according to the 2010 American Community Survey.
More than 489,600 people are employed in Tucson's civilian labor force. An estimated 1,200-plus high-tech businesses employ 50,000 people.
- May 2012 - U.S. News and World Report "2012 Best High School Rankings" places two Tucson high schools, University High School and BASIS Tucson, in the Top 10 Best High Schools nationally
- May 2012 – Two Tucson tech startups, MSDx Inc. and HJ3 Composite Technologies win Arizona Innovation Grants
- May 2012 - Tucson named No. 1 outside bike town by Outside Magazine
- August 2011 - Business Facilities Magazine named Tucson No. 6 on its list of the top 10 metro areas for aerospace/defense manufacturing
- Summer 2011 - Research firm Headlight, LLC, ranks Tucson No.2 Medium Metro on its list of "Best Performing Metros"
- February 2011 - Time rates Tucson as one of eight Intelligent Cities
- May 2010 - Forbes ranks Tucson as one of America's Most Innovative Cities
- April 2010 - Tucson "The Solar City," featured in Business Facilities Magazine April 2010 cover story
- March 2010 - Sunset ranks Tucson as one of its "20 Best Towns of the Future"