Chandler, Arizona Profile and History

Chandler Public Library

Judy Hedding

Chandler, Arizona was named for a veterinarian, Dr. A. J. Chandler, who settled in the area in 1891. The town of Chandler began in 1912, with the opening of the Hotel San Marcos in 1913. In 1920 the Town of Chandler incorporated, with Dr. Chandler as its first Mayor.

The San Marcos Resort and Spa is the oldest golf resort in Arizona, and is located in historic downtown Chandler, adjacent to Dr. A. J. Chandler Park, where many of Chandler's special events are held. In that park, you'll find a statue of Frank Lloyd Wright, a business associate of Dr. Chandler's.

The City of Chandler provides a unique historical overview of the major streets in Chandler, including the history surrounding the area and how the streets were names. We are told that "Most of the north and south streets in the original town site were named after states, and most of the east and west streets were named after American cities." Several of those street names remain today, like Boston Street, California Street, and Arizona Avenue. You can learn more about the history of Chandler from the City of Chandler website.

Chandler is located in the East Valley, in the southeast part of the Greater Phoenix area. The city offices of Chandler are about 20 miles from Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.

Generally, Tempe and Mesa are to the north, Mesa and Gilbert are to the east, and Phoenix (Ahwatukee) is to the west.

Chandler, Arizona covers about 70 square miles, and the elevation of Chandler is about 1,215 feet.

  • County: Maricopa
  • Area Code: 480
  • Zip Codes: 85224, 85225, 85226, 85244, 85246, 85248, 85249, 85286

A person who lives in Chandler is called a Chandlerite.

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Chandler Population Statistics

Chandler, Arizona

Judy Hedding

The population of Chandler is 249,146 (2013 estimate). That makes it the 4th largest city in Arizona.

Percentage White: 79%
Percentage African American: 5.3%
Percentage Asian: 7.9%
Percentage Latino/a or Hispanic (of any race): 23.1%

Percentage of people under 5 years old: 7.9%
Percentage of people over 65 years old: 7.8%
Median age: 33.9

Percentage of people 25 years old and older that graduated from 4-year college: 25.2%

Median household income: $71,171
Percentage of people below poverty level: 8.6%

All statistics mentioned here were obtained from the 2008-2102 American Community Survey, U.S. Census estimates, unless otherwise stated.

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Chandler Attractions, Special Events, Malls

Ostrich Festival

Judy Hedding

Chandler is thought of as a family-oriented city, with lots of parks and many family festivals and events.

  1. Chandler Center for the Arts
  2. Rawhide
  3. Ostrich Festival
  4. Chandler ArtWalk
  5. Chandler Skate Park
  6. Chandler Fashion Center (Chandler Mall)
  7. Phoenix Premium Outlets
  8. 4th of July in Chandler
  9. Winter/Christmas Festival in Chandler
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Chandler Largest Employers (Non-Government)

Chandler, AZ

Judy Hedding

The largest non-government employers in the City of Chandler are:

  • Intel Corporation
  • Bank of America
  • Wells Fargo
  • Verizon
  • Freescale Semiconductor
  • Chandler Regional Medical Center
  • Orbital Sciences
  • Microchip Technology
  • Nationstar Mortgage
  • Bashas
  • Education Management Corp.
  • Avnet
  • General Motors

In the government sector, the Chandler School District and City of Chandler are the two largest employers in Chandler.

Chandler-Gilbert Community College and Western International University both have campuses in Chandler.

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What's Special About Chandler

Chandler, AZ

Judy Hedding

In the 1980s Chandler saw a shift in its economic base from agricultural to high tech companies. Intel began operations in Chandler in 1980; the Intel® Pentium® processor set of products is manufactured in Arizona. Chandler was nicknamed the Silicon Desert, as companies opted to locate here instead of Silicon Valley.

Until recently, you could still drive around master-planned communities and corporate centers and find dairy farms in Chandler. They are rapidly disappearing, paving the way for more commercial and residential development.

Generally, Chandler is a safe city. Parts of downtown Chandler are lower income areas. Remember--if the price of the home or the rent for the apartment seems too good to be true, it probably is. The City of Chandler has worked diligently to make the downtown area a dining and entertainment destination, and their efforts are paying off as boutique shops, art spaces and eclectic cafes have steadily increased their presence. Where do the wealthier folks in Chandler live? You'll find a concentration of large homes in a golf course community called Ocotillo, in the southern part of Chandler, as well as at Fulton Ranch. A recent growth area for homes is in the southeast part of Chandler, near Riggs Road and east of McQueen.

Aside from the Chandler Fashion Center (mall), you'll find shops, gourmet foods, and at least 50 restaurants in west Chandler in and around the area of Ray Road and I-10. There are also movie theaters and dog parks.

Light rail is not scheduled to extend to Chandler at this time, so residents will access the Light Rail line from park and rides in Tempe and Mesa.