🇺🇸 Surprise is a city in Maricopa County, in the U.S. state of Arizona. It is situated in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area. The city has a 10,562-square-foot (981.2 m²) Aquatics Center and Maricopa County's north-west regional library, a $5.5 million, 20,000-square-foot (1,900 m²) library.
The city was founded in 1938 by Flora Mae Statler, who named it Surprise as she "would be surprised if the town ever amounted to much". Surprise officials previously thought the city was founded by Statler's husband, real estate developer and state legislator Homer C. Ludden, but in 2010 property records were discovered which listed Statler owning the land before she met Ludden.
When Surprise was subdivided to build inexpensive houses for agricultural workers, there were only a few houses and a gas station on the one-square-mile (1.6 km) parcel of land. Since then, the town has experienced tremendous growth. It incorporated as a city in 1960. The townsite is bounded by Greenway Road on the south, El Mirage Road on the east, Bell Road on the north, and Dysart Road on the west. City Hall is located on the site of one of Luke Air Force Base's former auxiliary airfields.
Tens of thousands of retirees moved to the city in the 1990s and early 2000s to live in Sun City Grand, an age-restricted resort-like community with homes built by the property development firm Del Webb. Surprise is about 5 miles (8 km) north-west of Del Webb's original Sun City development and adjacent to Sun City West.
Sun City Grand has become a large contributor to the city's population, which more than septupled from 10,187 to about 75,000 in 2004.
Surprise is between 20 and 30 miles (32 and 48 km) north-west of Phoenix. It is bordered to the north-east by Peoria, to the east by unincorporated Sun City West and Sun City, to the south-east by El Mirage, to the south by Glendale, and to the west by Buckeye and unincorporated Wittmann.
Largest employers According to the city's 2016 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the top employers in the city include: 1 Dysart Unified School District; 2 City of Surprise; 3 Wal-Mart; 4 Fry's Food and Drug; 5 McDonald's; 6 Maricopa County; 7 Sun City Grand Community Association; 8 The Home Depot; 9 Kohl's Department Store; 10 Sam's Club.
Surprise has a population of over 141,664 people. Surprise also forms part of the wider Phoenix metropolitan area which has a population of over 4,737,270 people.
To set up a UBI Lab for Surprise see: https://www.ubilabnetwork.org Twitter: https://twitter.com/UBILabNetwork