How to get around Phoenix without a map

It is a nightmare scenario that none of us wish for but must always prepare for. Your phone/GPS systems battery has died and you have to navigate a city you don’t know without technology.

What do you do? What do YOU do!?

Rest easy, the solution is right in front of you, at least in Phoenix it is.

Have you ever wondered what those little numbers and arrows mean on the streets signs around town?P1050815

Oh yes, those numbers and arrows have meaning and can help you navigate most of the metro Phoenix area easily.

See, Phoenix is laid out like a giant grid and is divided into hundred blocks that run 4 major directions, north, south, east and west.

You will find that avenues and drives are west of Central Avenue and Streets and Places are east of Central Avenue. Think of Central as 0 and the numbers increase going east or west. The arrows mean different things in different cities.

For instance, in Phoenix the arrows point towards Central Avenue and let you know if you are North or South of Washington Street, the median that divides the city north and south. In Scottsdale the arrows are actually pointing in the direction of the hundred block. So, they may not be the best thing to depend on in a pinch but at least you know what they mean now.

P1050816Generally, streets with names run east and west and streets with numbers run north and south. There are some exceptions to these rules like Scottsdale Road which runs north and south. You will find quite a few more exceptions to the rule in some of the newer areas of the valley.

Now, the numbers you see on the street signs indicate the hundred block that particular street is located and each street has a number. For example, if an address says that it is 4344 East Camelback I know that it is just west of 44th and Camelback and the home/business is on the north side of the street.

How do I know that?

In this grid system all even addresses are on the north and west sides of the street and any odd addresses are on the south and east sides of the streets. This is true for all addresses in the valley, again, you will find a few exceptions but it is a pretty hard and fast rule.

Those are the basics of getting around the Phoenix area in the Zombie Apocalypse, you can thank me later. Drive safe!


Speak Your Mind