Cole was first settled in the 1870s but developed rapidly in the turn of the century due to the expansion of the surrounding industry in the Platte River Valley. Development generally moved from southwest to northeast. By 1900 half of the residential blocks had been built and by 1930 the neighborhood was filled in. The majority of the early settlers were Western European immigrants generally working at the nearby rail yards, smelters, stock yards, and warehouses. After WWII, Cole become predominantly Hispanic.
Cole never experienced widespread blight and disinvestment but it experienced some rough decades likely between the 1970s-2000s. The neighborhood certainly appears to have stabilized as evidenced in its housing prices and a lack of vacancy but Cole still has lingering crime issues and limited retail amenities.
Yet Cole is a solid urban district that does a lot of urban things pretty well. Its best assets are its great public transit and bike access, great connectivity, walkable schools, park amenities, and good access to Dwtn. To become a great urban area Cole needs better density/vibrancy, more rental options, and better retail and cultural amenities.
Click here to view my Cole album Flickr
* Solid public transit and bike access. This helps create great access to Dwtn.
* Excellent connectivity.
* Great diversity overall esp. economic and racial diversity. Good # of families living here too.
* Solid walkable school assess with decent ratings and good grade diversity.
* For sale options are pretty moderately priced for Denver standards. Good # of 1-beds selling anywhere btwn 325K-500K, 2-beds 350K-750, 3 & 4 beds btwn 500K- the low 1Ms.
* Good recreational amenities including a rec center, Russel Square Park, the lengthy George Morrison Park, and the impressive 39th Aven Greenway spanning several blocks along all industrial space.
* Lots of cute historic bungalows here.
* Decent urban massing in the areas with commercial. Some autocentric spots
* Decent density.
* Good sidewalk infrastructure but only half of the curb cuts are ADA compliant.
* Rentals are pretty moderately priced for Denver standards but rather limited. 1-beds lease anywhere in the 1Ks, 2-beds btwn the mid 1Ks to 3K. A good # of 3-bed for rent that lease btwn 2K- the mid 3Ks.
* Still some crime issues but Cole is in a better place than it was a decade ago. Still some blight and grit remain too.
* So so cultural amenities including some food & beverage businesses, a handful of art galleries, and a couple of night clubs. Good access to the plentiful cultural amenities in Curtis Park & RiNo.
* Pretty underserved from a retail perspective. No supermarket or drug store. Cole does have a family dollar, several clothing/thrift stores, a couple salons/barbershops and many churches.
* Very limited modern in-fill. Some auto centric stuff but a some quality urban infill along Downing Street.
* Not great pedestrian activity.
* The neighborhood still suffers from a bit of an image issue.