Speer- a solid mixed-use urban district hostings Denver’s Broadway Avenue

This solid Denver district was developed primarily between the 1890s-1930s. It has a typical Denver form with gridded streets and regular alleyways. But does better from an urban perspective than other adjacent Denver districts as it has the major Broadway Business District on its western edge, lots of mixed-use areas throughout, and is quite dense thanks to several 60s & 70s high-rises and the densification of the neighborhood, which has been in force since zoning changes were made by the state in 2010.

Speer also excels at being a truly multi-model district with great transit and bike infrastructure. While housing is generally expensive, Sheer offers a good amount of moderately priced condo options. Speer also has solid retail and cultural offerings particularly along the Broadway Corridor.

Areas for improvement include more high quality walkable schools, more park and recreation options, and filling in autocentric gaps particularly present along the northern and southern end of Broadway Ave and Almeda Avenue.

Click here to view my Speer album on Flickr

URBAN STRENGTHS:

* Great density especially for a district built up btwn the 1910s-1940s.
* Generally good sidewalk infrastructure but many curb cuts are outdated or broken.
* High quality public transit access. Good access to dwtn across all modes of transportation. Great system of dedicated bike lanes and decent access to the City’s bike share.
* Great economic diversity.
* For sale properties are also expensive but good variety and there are many condos in the district. Lots of studios and 1-bed condos selling in the 200KS-400Ks. Some are a bit more expensive.  Lots of 2-bed condos that range from 300-800K, 2-beds homes/townhouses are on average a bit more expensive. 3 & 4 beds homes sell btwn 600K-1.4 M.
* Lots # of rentals but on the pricy side. Studios 1-beds lease btwn low 1Ks to mid 2Ks, 2-beds mid 1Ks -3K. Some 3-beds available generally leasing in the 3-4Ks.
* Good tree canopy.
* Solid cultural amenities including many restaurants, bars, breweries, cafes, an indie theater and community theater, and plenty of live music venues & night clubs.
* Good retail amenities including a couple supermarkets on the SW edge, a couple drug stores, good # of boutiques and unique stores along Broadway, a couple bookstores, a couple banks, several dessert spots & gyms, plenty of salons, a post office and public library, and several churches.
* Solid architecture all around. Cute historic residential holds, quality residential neighborhood infill, and great historic comm. along Broadway.

URBAN WEAKNESSES:

* Racial and generational diversity are pretty limited here.
* Walkable access to a decent number of schools generally rated well.
* Decent park amenities including a community garden, the Hungarian Freedom Memorial, and recreational trail along the northern boarder.  The extensive Washington Park is only several blocks south of the district and the private Denver Country Club sits on the eastern border.
* Urban massing is generally good but some gaps on Broadway on the northern and southern end. Almeda is a mixed bag.

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