Cathedral City is a city in Riverside County, California, United States. Locals gave it the nickname “Cat City”. The population was 51,200 at the 2010 census. Located between Palm Springs and Rancho Mirage, it is one of the cities in the Coachella Valley (Palm Springs area) of southern California. Cathedral City is the second largest in population in the Coachella Valley, after Indio.
The town’s name derives from “Cathedral Canyon” to the south of the town, so named in 1850 by Colonel Henry Washington because its rock formations were reminiscent of a cathedral. The city itself started as a housing subdivision in 1925, but was not incorporated until 1981. The city grew in population several times over during the past 35 years.
Population and area: 52, 595 residents and 21.8 square miles.
Cathedral City’s population growth and suburban sprawl was based on recent waves of immigration and minority groups purchased homes and apartments. According to the 2006 United States Census estimates, about half (50.0%) of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. But a 2006 study by the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce puts the city’s Latino percentage at over 60%. The largest ethnicity represented are Mexican and Mexican-American/Chicano, with additional large numbers of Colombians and Central American nationalities.
Major hazards: Extreme heat and related illnesses (heat exhaustion, heat stroke, heat syncope, heat rash, and heat cramps), fires, floods, storms and winter storms, and landslides.