From the Arizona Daily Star;
The Catalina Foothills, an area synonymous with growth and prestige for the past 70 years, is losing residents.
It was one of just three Pima County communities to show population declines in the 2010 census, along with the southeast-side neighborhood of Littletown and the old mining town of Ajo.
The Foothills, where household income approaches twice the norm in Pima County, lost nearly 3,000 people from 2010 to a population of 50,796, U.S. census figures show. It is the first time since the area was developed in the 1930s that it lost population, said David Taylor, a retired planner and longtime demographer who happens to live in the Foothills.
For as long as anyone can remember, the Foothills has been considered one of the most desirable places in Pima County to live. The average sales price for a home there runs about $375,000 today.
First developed in the 1930s by pioneer developer John Murphey, the Foothills has long proven attractive in part simply because it lies literally in the shadow of the Catalina Mountains, right next to the Coronado National Forest. It’s also drawn many people because of its own rolling hills and ridges and because of the many large-lot subdivisions, particularly in older areas, that left plenty of natural open space.
Will Pew, a lifelong Foothills resident and president of a neighborhood association there, said he wasn’t troubled at the reported population decline in the Catalina Foothills.
“Having grown up here, I don’t necessarily think more people is a good thing. In the past, it felt like there was more wide open space here, and I’m not against people moving in, but it has not necessarily improved the quality of life here,” said Pew, who is president of the Catalina Foothills Association, which was founded in 1956 to represent an area that was developed by pioneer builder Murphey.