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Catalina Vista – a Small Quaint Historic Tucson Neighborhood

Catalina Vista Historic District

central park in Catalina Vista neighborhood in Tucson
Catalina Vista is a quaint historic neighborhood located in midtown Tucson, close to the University of Arizona, University Medical Center, the Tucson Streetcar line, The Arizona Inn, and downtown. Catalina Vista is near Blenman-Elm neighborhood, bordered by Campbell Ave., Elm St., Tucson Blvd., and Grant Rd. It was first developed in 1940, although most homes in the neighborhood were built post-war. What makes this neighborhood distinctive is its curvilinear, palm tree lined streets; the wide, shallow lots; and the open spaces and parks found there. The neighborhood is made up primarily of ranch style homes. Catalina Vista is serviced by these TUSD schools: Blenman Elementary, Doolen Middle, and Catalina High.

Potter Place adjacent to Catalina Vista neighborhood

In 1946 the city of Tucson was expanded to include Catalina Vista within the city limits. A street known as Potter’s Place is within the boundaries of Catalina Vista. Potter’s Place was first developed as a ranch back in 1907, by James Wheeler, who moved to Tucson from Seattle seeking a dryer climate to alleviate his Tuberculosis symptoms. Wheeler built Tucson’s first swimming pool on the property in 1910. In 1924 the property was sold to Leighton Kramer, who was one of the founders of the Fiesta de los Vaqueros Tucson Rodeo which was held on the property. Kramer built a large home called the Rancho Santa Catalina on the site. Kramer died in 1930. Dickinson and Sue Potter purchased Rancho Santa Catalina and the land in 1940 to establish The Potter School for Girls in the mansion, which was a college prep school for girls in grades 7-12. It operated until 1953.

Catalina Vista was listed on the National Registrar of Historic Districts 2003. This designation can save on property taxes for qualifying homes in the neighborhood. Not every home in the neighborhood will qualify.

Catalina Vista map from 1940

Are you interested in buying or selling a home in Catalina Vista? Or are you interested in historic homes in Tucson? Contact Nick to discuss your options. 520-975-8956. Nick@RealTucson.com

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