Sun City, Arizona

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Sun City, Arizona
The Sun City DEVCO Model #1
The Sun City DEVCO Model #1
Location of Sun City in Maricopa County, Arizona
Location of Sun City in Maricopa County, Arizona
Sun City is located in the United States
Sun City
Sun City
Location in the United States
Coordinates: 33°36′51″N 112°16′55″W / 33.61417°N 112.28194°W / 33.61417; -112.28194Coordinates: 33°36′51″N 112°16′55″W / 33.61417°N 112.28194°W / 33.61417; -112.28194
CountryUnited States
 • Total14.59 sq mi (37.80 km2)
 • Land14.42 sq mi (37.34 km2)
 • Water0.17 sq mi (0.45 km2)
1,142 ft (348 m)
 • Total37,499
 • Estimate 
Time zoneUTC-7 (Mountain (MST))
ZIP codes
Area code(s)623
FIPS code04-70320
GNIS feature ID0011953
Sun City and Sun City West, Arizona from Landsat 8, 2016

Sun City is a census-designated place and unincorporated community in Maricopa County, Arizona, United States, that is within the Phoenix metropolitan area. The population was 37,499 according to the 2010 census. Its adjoining sister city is Sun City West. Both cities are retirement communities popular with snowbirds.


Sun City was opened January 1, 1960, with five home models, a shopping center, a recreation center, and a golf course. The opening weekend drew 100,000 people, ten times more than expected, and resulted in a Time magazine cover story.[3] The future retirement community was built on the site of the former ghost town of Marinette.[4] Developer Del E. Webb expanded Sun City over the years, and his company went on to build other retirement communities in the Sun Belt. Sun City West was built in the late 1970s, Sun City Grand in the late 1990s, Sun City Anthem in 1999, and Sun City Festival in July 2006.[5] Sun City, Arizona wasn't the first of its kind though. In 1957 Sun City, California was built. It was built in the middle of the Southern California desert. It was built next to a tiny town called Menifee, California. Sun City boosted Menifee into becoming a city in the early 90s causing more housing developments to begin popping up in Menifee. Eventually Sun City became part of Menifee, California but is still a thriving community and a big part of Menifee, California.

The community is well known to law students, as it is featured in the case Spur Industries v. Del E. Webb Development Co., 494 P.2d 700 (Ariz. 1972), commonly used in first-year property law courses to illustrate nuisance law.

The community's street network design consists largely of concentric circles in four main pinwheels.[6][7]


Sun City is located at 33°35′31″N 112°16′19″W / 33.59194°N 112.27194°W / 33.59194; -112.27194 (33.597439, −112.272052).[8]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 14.6 square miles (38 km2), of which 14.5 square miles (38 km2) is land and 0.1 square mile (0.2 km2, 0.62%) is water.


Historical population
Census Pop.

According to the census[10] of 2000, there were 38,309 people, 23,490 households, and 12,520 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 2,639.5 people per square mile (1,019.4/km2). There were 27,731 housing units at an average density of 1,910.7 per square mile (737.9/km2). The racial makeup of the CDP was 98.44% White, 0.51% Black or African American, 0.13% Native American, 0.30% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.16% from other races, and 0.44% from two or more races. One percent (1.00%) of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 23,490 households, out of which 0.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.5% were married couples living together, 3.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 46.7% were nonfamilies. Individuals comprised 44.1% of all households, and 39.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 1.60 and the average family size was 2.07.

In the CDP, the population was spread out, with 0.4% under the age of 18, 0.3% from 18 to 24, 2.0% from 25 to 44, 17.5% from 45 to 64, and 79.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 75 years. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 69.8 males.

The median income for a household in the CDP was $32,508, and the median income for a family was $40,464. Males had a median income of $35,459 versus $26,453 for females. The per capita income for the CDP was $25,935. About 2.5% of families and 4.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including none of those under age 18 and 4.3% of those age 65 or over.

Sports and recreation[edit]

The Sun City Rays were a member of the Senior Professional Baseball Association in 1990 for the league's second and final season. Despite having future Hall of Famers Rollie Fingers and Ferguson Jenkins, attendance was low and the club ceased operation when the circuit folded in December of that year. At the time the league folded, they had a 13-10 record and were second in the standings.

The city has eight golf courses[11] and seven Recreational Centers.[12]

Sun City is the home of the Sun Bowl Amphitheatre.

The city’s four lawn bowling locations are among the sites for the 2019 US Lawn Bowling Open’s South Central Division, held from November 3 through November 9.[13]



  1. ^ "2016 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 18, 2017.
  2. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017.
  3. ^ "TIME Magazine Cover: Del Webb - Aug. 3, 1962". Retrieved December 17, 2018.
  4. ^ Grant, Tina (1988). International directory of company histories. 14. St. James Press. p. 163. ISBN 1-55862-342-6. Retrieved July 31, 2010.
  5. ^ Judith Ann Trolander, "Age 55 or Better: Active Adult Communities and City Planning," Journal of Urban History, (Nov 2011) 37#6 pp 952–974
  6. ^
  7. ^ "85351 Zip Code (Sun City, Arizona) Profile - homes, apartments, schools, population, income, averages, housing, demographics, location, statistics, sex offenders, residents and real estate info". Retrieved December 17, 2018.
  8. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. February 12, 2011. Retrieved April 23, 2011.
  9. ^ "CENSUS OF POPULATION AND HOUSING (1790–2000)". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved August 7, 2010.
  10. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  11. ^ "Sun City, Arizona – The Original Fun City! – The Original Sun City". Retrieved December 17, 2018.
  12. ^
  13. ^

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