I’ve always been a ‘small town girl’. Living in Las Cruces gave that to me. When I moved to Northern Virginia in 1998, I knew that it was going to be an interesting experience and it didn’t let me down.
My morning commute from Dumfries, VA to Alexandria, VA took, on average, almost 70 minutes. I learned that if I hit the traffic flow within a specific time frame, I could make it in about 20 minutes. My longest commute was over 5 hours after 9/11.
In Las Cruces, it takes approximately 10 minutes to get from one side of town to the other. If you live in Picacho Hills or on the east mesa, it might take 15 or 20 from one end to the other.
When I moved to Tucson, I’d already had an idea of how the traffic was. I’d been visiting monthly for over a year. Here’s the deal on Tucson traffic – I have yet to be in a traffic jam, slow moving traffic or similar. I drive to downtown from my home almost daily and make it in 15 minutes or so without any of the big city problems. I have learned to keep an eye out for folks on bicycles!
Tucson’s layout is great in my mind. If you’ve heard the term ‘hub and spoke’, you’ll understand. It’s normally used for airlines but it’s also used in city/development planning. You have a commercial center – grocery stores, gas stations, retail and so on – and the housing develops in “spokes” around it. That’s how a lot of Tucson is laid out. From my home, I have 3 grocery stores, numerous restaurants, retail outlets and so on. I don’t have to drive across town to find what I need. It’s just around the corner.
Tucson is a BIG city – there are almost a million people living in the Old Pueblo but you would never notice it. For me, Tucson is laid out almost perfectly. I won’t say it’s perfect because nothing ever is. It’s easy to get from point A to point B, traffic is rarely a problem – I-10 doesn’t come into play for me – and everything I need is just a stone’s throw away from home or the office.
This is definitely my kind of town!