Downtown Historic Streets

History of Tucson’s Early Streetscapes and Street Names

Because Tucson originated as an outpost of the Spanish government, its early streets bore Spanish names and reflected the character of its early population. After the railroad arrived, many street names were changed to reflect the preferences of new residents. To learn more about the history and development of Tucson’s early streets and street names, click the links below.

  Brief Descriptions of Early Historic Streets of Downtown Tucson (2.88 MB)
  Tucson's Early Streetscapes 1775-1912 (1.43 MB)

Street Smarts Newspaper Column  

Beginning in 2012, David Leighton began a regular column for the Arizona Daily Star on the background and history of how streets in Tucson obtained their names. Click here to link to the articles related to downtown Tucson streets.