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Rio Rico Medical & Fire District

Rio Rico, Arizona

Rio Rico is a planned community located in Santa Cruz County, 57 miles south of Tucson and 12 miles north of Mexico. The community’s 39,000 acres roll gently down from the Santa Rita Mountains through the San Cayetano Foothills westward to the Santa Cruz River. The area around and including Rio Rico was once part of a tract of the “Baca Float”, a tract of approximately 100,000 acres granted by the U. S. Congress to the heirs of Luis Maria Baca as the result of an early, unclear grant from the Spanish government.

The community had its beginnings in 1969 and has continued to grow at a steady pace. Founded in 1969 and once a sleepy border community, Rio Rico is now growing at a rapid and consistent rate of 7% annually. According to US Census figures the population in 1990 was 1,407, growing to 10,413 in the year 2,000; and now Rio Rico Utilities reports that they are extending water service to nearly 20,000 residents.

High desert with an elevation of 4000 ft. gives us moderate climate throughout the year. Our summer highs are from the 90’s to low 100’s and our winter, a little colder due to higher elevation, ranges from low 30’s to high 60’s. There are two lakes located in area. Rio Rico has an excellent school system (one high school, two middle schools, two elementary schools and one preschool). Rio Rico is approximately one hour from Tucson, one hour from Sierra Vista and 25 minutes from the Patagonia Mountains. Some of the best golf courses in southern Arizona are located in our area. Rio Rico is active in sports and we house State Champion Little League teams.

Rio Rico is actually the first due area of two fire districts. We now estimate that our district serves a population of 11,000 and growing in the 42 square miles that we cover. The other 9,000 or so Rio Rico residents reside in our primary mutual aid area, which encompasses an additional 119 square miles.