The City of Poway was incorporated in 1980. Its nickname, the "City in the Country," still stands today even though it has grown with a population of about 50,500.
Poway’s unique geography allows for a high quality of living with a diverse and thriving business community. The Poway Business Park provides a strategic location for more than 450 businesses of all sizes representing manufacturing, warehouse and distribution, and corporate offices, and retail. The Poway Business Park, has helped make Poway #6 in business growth in the State of California, as rated in Outlook Magazine. General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Sysco Foods, Lightning Brewery, Quatro Composites, Costco, Geico Insurance, Sportsplex USA, and Home Depot Inc., are just a few businesses operating within this business park. With approximately 8.9 million square feet of developed space and a workforce of 19,000 the Poway Business Park remains a strong component of the local and regional economy.
Poway’s pro-business services include assistance with permit processing, site selection, facilitating tax exemptions, workforce resources, and technical assistance referrals. In addition, Poway’s unique governance does not include a planning commission reducing the number of decision making bodies in the project review and approval process.
The History of Poway
Just like many early San Diego towns, Poway was once settled by the Native American tribe, the Digueños. Many pictographs seen on boulders within Poway date back to the 1500s but the newest history began in 1758. The padres from the Mission San Diego de Alcala kept cattle in the valley during this time.
The original spelling "Paguay" has shown up on mission documents dating back to 1774. It was written in many variations since then, Paui, Pauai, Powaii, and in the end, Poway. The definition of the word also has variations. One Native American linguist believes it means "here, where the waters meet," whereas many translations come to "the two little valleys".
Type of Housing
Poway offers a wide variety of housing including apartments, condos and single family homes and is one of the safest communities regionally, posting the lowest overall crime rates since incorporation in December 1980. The City Council is committed to providing a wide range of affordable housing for our workforce. Those with children may appreciate the Poway Unified School District, which boasts one of the top educational systems in the state, with 24 California Distinguished Schools and 15 National Blue Ribbon Schools. Furthermore, Expansion Management Magazine has recognized the Poway Unified School District as a Gold Medal School District.
Along with the countless rental and for-sale choices, there is also a wide variety of affordable housing options. All of Poway's affordable housing communities are owned and operated by local nonprofit housing developers.
Poway sits right off Interstate 15 and has easy access to State Routes 67 and 56. Residents are a short drive away from Downtown San Diego, the beautiful coastline, mountains, and desert.
Poway's transportation history mirrors that of early California. In 1888, the first stagecoach began to service local communities and the stage made one stop in town, at the Poway Post Office. The city of San Diego discontinued the stage line in 1912 and in 1961 Poway achieved an 80% paved road rate. In keeping with its western heritage, there are still dirt roads for use by horses, bikers, pedestrians, and hikers.
Poway residents can access local and regional destinations with public transit and park-and-ride services. Local bus transportation is provided through the Metropolitan Transit System. There are bus stops throughout the community with regularly scheduled stops during weekdays.
The Poway Unified School District was created in 1871 and encompasses all of Poway and the nearby communities. Back in its beginning, first through eighth graders were all included in one classroom. Students did not usually continue to high school, but if they did, they would have to travel to Escondido to do so. Today, it operates twenty-two elementary schools, six middle schools, four high schools, and one continuation high school.
Poway High School was recently selected as one of 33 in the nation to receive a $1,000 Grammy Signature Award for excellence in music education. This school has also earned the top statewide rank of 10, the maximum.
Within San Diego County, the Poway Unified School District is the third largest and serves approximately 33,000 students.
Located in Poway, the Poway Academy of Hair Design, is one of three nationally accredited schools of the San Diego Beauty Academy. As a Pivot Point Member school, they are recognized as the world leader in Cosmetology education.
Surrounded by beautiful landscapes and 4,000 acres of open space, the City enjoys tremendous recreational areas including 66 miles of trails, 230 acres of developed parkland, and 22 parks for all to experience. . Lake Poway is nestled against the hills with groves of eucalyptus and is a wonderful spot for fishing and boating. Nearby, sits the Blue Sky Ecological Reserve, whose primary purpose is habitat conservation making it a wonderful place to go hiking.
The Old Poway Park features a 2-acre green park for picnics and relaxation. It houses historic buildings along with the Poway-Midland Railroad, which still has a working trolley car and steam locomotive. Historical tours can be taken with groups of 20 or more and they include presentations in the Nelson House, an 1800s farmhouse, and the Heritage Museum, which focuses on the pioneer times in Poway and the Kumeyaay Indians.
Tours can be taken through the historic site of where the Kumeyaay-Ipai Indians lived, at the Kumeyaay-Ipai Interpretive Center. The City of Poway and the San Pasqual Band of Indians have worked together to complete a replica Kumeyaay Village.
Poway’s Veterans Park serves as a permanent tribute to the past, present, and future veterans of the United States Military who have provided unselfish and honorable service to this country. In 2010, when Veterans Park was dedicated to the public, more than 2,000 veteran supporters were on hand to mark the historic event.
Other local amenities include an Olympic-sized pool, and annual activities like the Old Fashioned 4th of July celebration, Train Song Festival, Christmas in the Park, and Youth Fishing Derby, to name a few. Poway exemplifies country living at its best, and residents and visitors alike are invited to share in this special environment.