The state’s largest university, another by-product of the railroad boom, was established in 1889 as a tiny outpost on the far side of the tracks.
By 1909, under the guidance of its president William George Tight, it had acquired the outline of its distinctive pueblo-inspired architecture (though Tight was then fired in part for his non–Ivy League aesthetics).
Pueblo revival pioneer John Gaw Meem carried on the vision through the 1940s, and even with contemporary structures now interspersed among the original halls, it’s still a remarkably harmonious vision, uniting the pastoral sanctuary feel of the great Eastern campuses with a soothing, minimalist interpretation of native New Mexican forms.
Surrounding the campus is the typical scrum of cheap pizza places, bohemian coffeehouses, and dilapidated bungalow rentals.
The next neighborhood east along Central is the city’s best shopping district, Nob Hill, developed around a shopping plaza in the late 1940s and still showing that decade’s distinctive style in marquees and shop facades.