MARANA PROFILE

Marana Means Business

Marana is fast becoming known as the most business supportive community in Southern Arizona. With exceptional access to multimodal transportation, a newly reorganized Development Services Center and a local government that values corporate investment, businesses both large and small are taking advantage of development opportunities in Marana. The Marana Economic Roadmap, the community’s strategic plan for economic development, identifies three target industries that will lead the way for the Town’s future job growth: transportation and logistics, tourism and visitor experience, and regional industry cluster support.

              Transportation                             & Logistics

Marana’s unique position straddling Interstate 10 just northwest of Tucson and only 90 minutes south of Phoenix contributes to its unique position as an emerging logistics hub. Running parallel with the I-10 is the Union Pacific Railroad, presenting another option for the movement of goods and services. The Town of Marana has also invested over the past decade in infrastructure improvements to the Marana Regional Airport, making it a popular facility for executive travel and general aviation. 

Business Industry Cluster Support

The aerospace, aviation services and defense industries have a strong presence in the Metro Tucson area, specifically in Marana. The community is investing money in infrastructure development and improvement in order to better attract these sustainable, career-oriented industries to the area. As businesses of these types locate in clusters, several key goals will be accomplished for Marana: creation of high-paying, career oriented jobs for a strong economic base, attraction of retail to support population growth related to business cluster development, and finally, reducing the need for local businesses to seek suppliers or contractors for goods and services outside of the Marana area.

TOURISM AND VISITOR EXPERIENCE

Tourism has long been a staple of the Southern Arizona economy. Visitors are drawn to the community’s inspiring Sonoran Desert, which is suited to being outdoors year-round. Come explore world class hiking, biking, stargazing, and native flora and fauna. The Forbes 5 Star Rated  Ritz-Carlton Dove Mountain sets the bar high with a world class resort, as well as outstanding dining, golf and spa facilities.

The Town of Marana is also investing in a future downtown development area that will feature high-end shopping, dining and entertainment. The community's Heritage Park and Santa Cruz River Path offer visitors a glimpse into Marana's rich history and culture, as well as attractive outdoor recreation amenities.

 

Marana Lives on the Cutting Edge

Marana is home to a number of world-class companies on the cutting edge of science and technology. These corporations provide high-quality jobs for the community and critical linkages to Marana’s educational system, helping develop the next generation of innovative leaders. Partnerships between the business and educational sectors are frequent, with many companies opting to “adopt a school” and provide critical career and technological resources for students.

The Town of Marana also sees itself as setting the example for progress and innovation, especially when it comes to use of taxpayer money. Even while growing at a rate of nearly 150 percent since 2000 and building key infrastructure to handle new developments, Marana businesses and residents still enjoy a low-tax environment when compared to other similar-sized communities. Marana has many times been recognized for its creative use of funds to ensure that public projects are delivered on time, on budget and to the satisfaction of its residents.


Marana's Advantage: Planning Today for Tomorrow

public schools

Marana has long been recognized as a great place to raise a family, thanks in large part to its outstanding schools and lifelong educational opportunities. Starting in the Marana Unified School District, students are given opportunities for high achievement through innovative classroom technologies and partnerships with the local business community. In recent years, Marana schools have been awarded multiple statewide “A+ School” recognitions and “National Blue Ribbon” awards, and in 2007 were recognized as home of the Arizona Teacher of the Year.

Healthcare

Access to superior healthcare is also a major focus of Marana’s community goals. The Marana Health Center, with convenient clinics throughout Southern Arizona, recently broke ground on a three-story facility across from the Marana Municipal Complex with more than 74,000 square feet of general medicine, pharmacy, dental and laboratory space. Marana is also located near the full-service Northwest Medical Center.

Higher Education

Higher education opportunities are a short drive from Marana at Pima Community College and The University of Arizona. With campuses throughout Pima County, PCC offers career and technical training to many Southern Arizona businesses, as well as two year programs designed to help high school graduates succeed at traditional four-year colleges or universities. The University of Arizona, one of the world’s top research institutions and home to more than 37,000 students, is also a major driver of the Southern Arizona economy. The UA serves as a learning center for the region and produces a well-qualified workforce for many of Marana’s high-tech employers.


History Thrives in Marana

Marana is known for its rich heritage, celebrated through well-attended community events and exciting public projects. While the Town was incorporated only a little more than 30 years ago, the Marana area has long been a center of agriculture and trade for many cultures and peoples.

Marana is one of the longest continuously inhabited areas in Arizona, beginning with the ancient Hohokam Indians who occupied vast areas along the Santa Cruz River hundreds of years ago. Archaeological finds from this time period are not uncommon in Marana, and the Town has strived to incorporate significant prehistoric features into its public projects and heritage displays.

Primarily a farming community for much of the 20th century, today’s Marana is a balanced mix of progress and rich cultural history. Visitors can enjoy a wealth of heritage-related activities, from rodeo competitions to archaeological digs, many of which are available year-round.

Marana Heritage Conservancy

The Marana Heritage Conservancy (Marana, AZ) was established to discover, preserve and promote the traditions, cultures, historic places, working landscapes and natural treasures in the Marana Sphere of Influence through education, preservation, fundraising and community outreach.

They meet Thursdays from 2:00 to 5:00 p.m. in the Marana Heritage Conservancy Show Room at the Marana Municipal Complex, 11555 W. Civic Center Dr. 

Visitors can also stop in to see the "100 Years of Marana History" and enjoy a private tour.

For group visits contact: Joan F. Smith, 520-572-5601, jfsmith@maranaheritage.org

Visit the Marana Heritage Conservancy

Marana's History

  • 550 to 850: Hohokam culture begins
  • Late 1600s: Spanish arrive from south and Apache from northeast
  • 1694: Father Kino is first known European to visit area
  • 1775: Juan Bautista de Anza expedition passes through on way to founding San Francisco
  • 1880: Southern Pacific Railroad arrives from north
  • 1890: Name “Marana” first appears on Southern Pacific Railroad map
  • 1912: Arizona becomes 48th state
  • 1917: Community named Postvale; cotton industry thrives
  • 1924: First Mormon settlers arrive
  • 1930: Chinese farming community develops
  • 1957: Marana Health Center opens
  • 1961: Historic mercantile business district demolished to prepare for Interstate 10 construction
  • 1977: Town is incorporated
  • 1979: Start of aggressive annexation and growth
  • 1999: First mayor elected by residents
  • 2005: State-of-the-art municipal complex opens

Marana's Great Outdoors

Marana’s goal to become the “Recreation Capital of Arizona” is quickly becoming a reality, with outstanding opportunities to enjoy healthy, active lifestyles available throughout the community.

The Town has some of the finest golf in Arizona, available on both public and private courses. Hiking is also a major draw to the Marana area, with breathtaking vistas of the Tortolita Mountains and the entire Tucson valley awaiting adventurers of every skill level.

Children, families and seniors also play important roles in Marana’s reputation as a recreation capital. The Town of Marana Parks and Recreation Department offers popular special interest classes to residents and visitors of all ages, including dance, aquatics and aerobics, and sponsors a number of adult sports leagues throughout the community. Marana is also great place to get fit at your own pace, with miles of multiuse paths and trails that make seemingly distant parts of town feel connected. 

And don’t forget the rodeo. One of Marana’s historic pastimes is still an active part of its recreational culture. Whether you’re a professional cowboy or just an aspiring one, watching these athletes hone their skills under the Marana sunset is an experience you won’t soon forget.