By Joshua Bowling | Arizona Republic
Mike Ingram looks at raw desert west of the White Tank Mountains, some 40 miles west of Phoenix, where brush clings to brown soil and cactuses stretch toward blue sky, and envisions tens of thousands of homes.
Ingram, founder and chairman of Scottsdale-based El Dorado Holdings, manages the ambitious Douglas Ranch master-planned community with former Arizona Diamondbacks and Phoenix Suns managing partner Jerry Colangelo. They plan, possibly next year, to begin building 119,000 homes for as many as 300,000 residents here.
The massive development is just one of more than two dozen housing communities planned in Buckeye. Each one that breaks ground is a signal that metro Phoenix’s growth is, increasingly, headed west.
“When I moved here in ’85, 50% of all homes in the Valley were in the southeast Valley,” Ingram said. “They’re running out of land, and the West Valley is primed to do well.”
Buckeye is the fastest-growing city in the U.S. and the last major slice of metro Phoenix to develop, trading natural desert and family farms for suburban strip malls, distribution centers and pristine master-planned communities.