The southeast section of the city is where you’ll find Agritopia. Tree-lined streets and homes with traditional facades frame this historic estate. New residents have their pick of several different house styles based on those constructed in Phoenix in the 1930s and 1940s. In line with the name, the area places a premium on preserving Arizona’s agricultural heritage within a modern urban setting that prioritizes both form and function.
Arizona’s Agritopia is a 166-acre mixed-use planned village that encourages agrarianism while uniting people of different economic backgrounds. A certified organic farm, residential lots, and commercial buildings make up the “agrihood” in this neighborhood. Next to each other are houses ranging in size from 1,300 to 7,500 square feet, some of which have full basements and others with partial basements (both of which are quite unusual in Arizona). Narrow streets and front porches, as well as low back fences, promote neighborly connection, evoking the 1950s Midwest. Everything in Agritopia has a distinct “farm” vibe.
Joe Johnston developed the area in the 2000s on what had been his family’s farm for decades. The developer built single-family homes, cottages, and bungalows in neotraditional forms popular in early 20th-century America on 452 of the available lots. There are also four restaurants, a community center, an assisted living facility, a community garden, and a private Christian school serving 470 students. The creators of the area instituted covenants that discouraged rental housing and encouraged home-based and agricultural industries, as well as pedestrian transit.
The concept of Agritopia was developed to promote social cohesion and accessibility through walking in the greater Phoenix area. One of the independent restaurants at Agritopia is “Joe’s Farm Grill,” which was featured on Guy Fieri’s “Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives” on the Food Network and is open seven days a week. It’s open every day of the week and provides all three meals. There’s a place called “The Coffee Shop” right across the street from Joe’s Farm Grill, and it won a competition called “Cupcake Wars” on the Food Network. The Coffee Shop is open for breakfast and lunch, with a variety of food and drink options in addition to its award-winning pastries like scones and cupcakes. Located in Agritopia’s newest “Barnone” complex, artisans sell and produce their wares right before your eyes. In Barnone, skilled artisans gather to produce and trade their wares.