Tempe Town Lake is a reservoir that occupies a portion of the dry riverbed of the Salt River as it passes through the city of Tempe, Arizona just north of Tempe Butte.Work out when and for how long to visit Tempe Town Lake and other Tempe attractions using our handy Tempe travel planner .
On July 20, 2010, a portion of the west side of the dam that contained the water in the lake collapsed sending a flood of water into the Salt River bed which drained the lake.
In March 1989, Tempe adopted the Rio Salado Master Plan which represented the culmination of more than 20 years of environmental land planning. Studies of water quality and usage, the Mill Avenue Bridges and ASU recreation ensued and programming began. A groundbreaking ceremony near Tempe Beach Park marked the beginning of construction of the river channelization. The Rio Salado Master Plan showed a Town Lake concept with a continuous body of water between the north and south shores. Previously, the lake concept included islands; this concept was modified to meet the flow capacity of the river channel.
In 1995, the City added more staff to the team dedicated to the Rio Salado project and began construction of a mile long bike path along the south bank of the river. The path features public art at a number of spots along the way. The city began the Town Lake design report and completed another financial capacity study and landscape designs for portions of the parks. The next year, the consultant completed construction drawings for the Tempe Town Lake and the City designated 800acre of area including the lake as Rio Salado Park. On March 19, 1997, requests for bids were sent out for the lake construction. The city awarded contacts for construction of the lake on June 12, and groundbreaking ceremonies were held on August 8.
Tempe Town Lake Reviews
We have spent many days at Tempe Town Lake. We bike, walk and have even rented a kayak. There is a nice path all the way around. Lots of people exercising or picnicking. The is lots of new building be... more »
What a lake in the desert, yes it's man made but it is lovely and there is always something going on for kids of all ages more »
A really great place to walk the dog. Very clean and very nice.
Do not bring a family here unless u enjoy the droves of homeless. And not the fun kind either. It was dirty, trash in the grass everywhere. I'll give it another chance but I'll definitely be armed.
Plan your trip to Tempe
Get a personalized planA complete day-by-day itinerary
based on your preferences
Customize itRefine your plan. We'll find the
best routes and schedules
Manage itEverything in one place.
Everyone on the same page.
View all >
Side trips from Tempe
Hidden gems in Tempe
Kid-friendly things to do in Tempe
Fun & Games in Tempe
Plans to Tempe Town Lake by other users
24 days in Tempe BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES December, popular sights PREFERENCES: December ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 9 days in Tempe & Minocqua BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, popular sights PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 9 days in Phoenix, Sedona & Grand Canyon National Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 59 days in Gilbert BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES January, popular sights PREFERENCES: January ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 8 days in Tempe BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, popular sights PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 12 days in Tempe & Barstow BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, popular sights PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium