As you approach the resort-inspired community of Estrella, you can’t help but be captivated by the panoramic views of the Sierra Estrella Mountains. In addition to miles of paths that weave throughout the neighborhoods, a picturesque golf course and strong community culture, Estrella has a rich history that dates back to Arizona’s inception.
Arizona celebrated 100 years of statehood on February 14, 2012 and Estrella as a community is proud to acknowledge the state’s centennial year and take a look back at its own place in Arizona’s history.
In 1854 the U.S. Minister to Mexico, James Gadsden, signed an agreement with Mexico to purchase what is today southern Arizona and New Mexico. The purpose of the land purchase was for the construction of the southern route for a transcontinental railroad. Prior to the railroad construction, the Butterfield Overland Express was the most famous stagecoach delivering transcontinental mail. The Butterfield Overland Express ran from Tipton, Missouri to San Francisco, California, with its route passing just south of Estrella.
Connected to the rest of the nation with the arrival of the Southern Pacific railroad through the towns of Liberty and Buckeye in 1910, Arizona was granted statehood two years later. As Arizona started to build a reputation for its climate, it also became an idyllic place to grow cotton which was used in making rubber at the beginning of World War I. This period was known as the Cotton Boom of Arizona. In response to the growing demand for cotton, Paul Litchfield, an executive at the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company, purchased 16,000 acres of farmland in the southwest Valley. A large portion of that land is now the City of Goodyear. Over the next sixty years, Goodyear established itself as a prominent city in the Phoenix metropolitan area.
In 1984, the community was born when the property that would become Estrella was added as a Federal land preserve and made available for public purchase. Four years later, a three-day extravaganza celebrated Estrella’s first offerings with a grand opening, lakeside activities and a concert that featured the Phoenix Symphony.
Over the next decade Estrella became the desert showplace that it is today. In 1999, the Golf Club of Estrella opened featuring a championship 18-hole golf course designed by renowned golf architects Nicklaus Design. The course took advantage of the Sonoran Desert and the Sierra Estrella Mountain views to create one of the country’s most spectacular rounds of golf.
In 2005, famed master planned community developer Newland Communities purchased Estrella. Over the past seven years, Newland has continued to build up the close-knit community and enhance amenities and conveniences for Estrella families. In 2009, Estrella was named the number one master-planned community in Arizona by Ranking Arizona magazine. This marked the fourth consecutive year Estrella received this accolade.
In 2010, CantaMia, the first 55 and better community within Estrella opened with overwhelming enthusiasm. Addtionally in 2010, Mountain Ranch Marketplace opened and now includes Safeway, Chase Bank and other services and eateries.
And that’s just the beginning. Newland Communities is invested in the future quality of life at Estrella and is committed to attracting some of the best homebuilders and retail partners to make life here the best it can be.
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