Contacts - Sun Corridor Legacy

Ian Dowdy
Sun Corridor Legacy Program Director

602-393-4310 x 308

New Bill

Representative Raúl Grijalva (D-Dist. 3) has introduced HR 1799, which seeks to preserve critical tracts west of Phoenix that serve as important wildlife and recreation areas, safeguard the viability of Luke Air Force Base and the Barry M. Goldwater Range, and protect environmental amenities to boost economic opportunities for West Valley communities. Download HR 1799.

Resources - Sun Corridor Legacy

Imagine Greater Tucson

Publications - Sun Corridor Legacy

The Art of the Deal: Crafting Smart State Trust Land Exchanges in Arizona

the_art_of_the_deal_cover_thumbnailA study of the current processes available for state trust land exchanges in Arizona, featuring case studies and recommendations on how to improve the overall process to maximize trust returns and develop a mechanism to release trapped value of isolated lands through exchange.

Download the report (PDF)

Wires, Roads, and Water: Developing Sustainable Infrastructure on State Trust Land 

wires_roads_and_water_cover_thumbnailA detailed look at reasons planning for infrasturcture on state trust land in advance of development is necessary and options to make it possible in Arizona.

Download the report (PDF)

The Quarrel Between Past and Present: The Economics of Reforming Arizona's Century Old State Trust Land Rules

quarrel_between_past_and_present_final_thumbnailA comprehensive report anaylizing the history of state trust land and how the current management regulations keep the Arizona State Land Department from moving into the 21st century.

Download the report (PDF)

Routes, Rails, and Roads: Transportation Infrastructure Development on State Trust Land

routes_rails_and_roads_final_020311_cover_thumbnailA look at options to improve Arizona State Land Department's ability to site transportation infrastructure in advance of development.

Download the report (PDF)


Tucson’s New Prosperity: Capitalizing on the Sun Corridor

Tucsons_New_Prosperity_CoverA new Institute report encourages Tucson to start viewing Phoenix as an asset instead of a competitor.

Download the report (PDF)
Read the Press Release.


Strategies for Renewable Energy Projects On Arizona's State Lands


Examine the strategies which would allow Arizona State Land Department to capitalize on its extensive land holdings suitable for solar development.  

Download the report (PDF)

Riding The Rails To Sustainability

Straw Bale 2009 Summary Report

Survey Of Arizona Sitting Stockholders

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Home Where We Work Arizona Sun Corridor Legacy

Sun Corridor Legacy Program


The “Sun Corridor” refers to Arizona’s megapolitan area stretching from Nogales in the south to Prescott in the north, with Phoenix and Tucson at its core. The megapolitan is growing at a steady rate, but that growth comes with the challenge of balancing the conservation of natural desert and open space against urban quality of life. The Sonoran Institute believes that growth and conservation can work together successfully. As one of the four keystone initiatives of the Sonoran Institute, the Sun Corridor Legacy Program addresses growth and conservation as models for sustainable development. Read more            




Current Initiatives


Livable Communities Coalition


AZ STL_Map     

State Trust Lands      


MSP 3095

Sonoran Desert Heritage

State Parks_Conservation_Profile_cover

Conservation Profiles 



Worker Attraction Study



Proposed I-11 Analysis


 The primary goals of the Sun Corridor Legacy Program include:

The Sun Corridor’s desirable climate, affordable housing, and relatively low cost of living are reasons why this area continues to attract new residents. The area’s future quality of life, environmental quality, and economic prosperity will be determined by how well growth is managed. Going forward, regional solutions that comprehensively address conservation, development, transportation, and water and energy issues will be critical to a sustainable future.

Arizonans must make better decisions about how to develop communities, preserve cherished open spaces, ensure an adequate high-quality water supply, protect our quality of life, and enhance economic prosperity. Sonoran Institute identifies new approaches to leadership through engagement with federal agencies, cities, towns, and stakeholder groups to help each community determine the best protection and mix of uses for lands in this region.

News & Updates

November 2012

Proposition 119, the Arizona State Trust Land Amendment, passed with a 62% yes vote. Read more.


Read more: News & Updates



Collaborating on Renewable Energy in Arizona

Over 200 individuals, representing energy regulators, renewable energy developers, conservation organizations, government entities, and Native American tribes, participated in the Sonoran Institute's day-long Arizona Clean Energy Forum on March 23, 2011. Governor Jan Brewer offered the keynote address, applauding the collaborative spirit of the process and the noting that the timing could not be better.

Arizona's abundance of sunshine makes solar energy development an obvious choice for meeting the Renewable Energy Standard (RES), which requires that 15 percent of the retail electricity sold by the state's regulated utilities be produced from renewable sources by 2025.

The notion that clean energy is a good idea was universally held by the participants, but how to achieve it with a minimum of negative impact on communities, wildlife, and the environment requires the input of all stakeholders. The next steps include: agreement on large-scale renewable siting, improved coordination among federal, state, and local permitting and approval processes, and regional thinking in terms of large-scale development.

Read the full article in April's Western Dispatch.


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