Modern Phoenix has no Chinatown to speak of, but that wasn't always the case. Starting in 1872, railroad construction brought Chinese workers in droves, and before long, a vibrant community of businesses and restaurants sprung up along Montezuma Street. The year 1895 saw the population shift to a new Chinatown three blocks south, where it prospered for the next 50 years before the appeal of suburban single-family homes caused much of its population to disperse. Today, a singular structure, the Sun Mercantile Building, is all that remains of Phoenix’s Chinatown, but Chinese businesses continue to thrive throughout the city, uninhibited by boundaries.
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