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eagle

Denver Places to live...

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Hello Colorado UP forumers,

We are in our low 30's, no kids, and very excited about hopefully relocating to the Denver area this fall. I know there's a ton of development in the area but unfortunately not much activity on this forum. We're from Grand Rapids which has one of the most active forums on UP.

I'm looking for comments on areas to rent and eventually purchase. Initially we'll need an rental unit for less than $1200/month. We'd like 2 beds/baths but could get by with less since it's only temporary. Eventually we'll look for a condo to purchase but I'll know the area well enough myself by then.

At this point we don't know we're we'll be working for sure. I'm in the hiring process with both JeffCo Sheriff's Department and Denver Police department so could potentially drive somewhere in Jefferson County or the city of Denver everyday for work. My wife doesn't have a job yet but she's looking in the Metro Denver area.

I'm looking primarily towards the western side of the city. I love all the new downtown lofts but it's probably not practical for us to live downtown.

We'd like to live within regular shopping distance of a Whole Foods. We love Boulder and would like to have the option of either going downtown Denver or Boulder for entertainment. If we're in Colorado we want to "feel" like we're in Colorado (meaning a nice view of the mountains and as short a drive as possible to get into the mountains for hiking, camping, kayaking, etc.) As cool as some of the eastern side is I don't want to add 45 minutes to every trip we take to the mountains.

So I'm looking primarily at Arvada, Lakewood, Broomfield, Golden, etc.

Love to hear any comments,

Thanks

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I've been researching a pending move to Denver as well. If all things go well and we can get our house sold, we'll hopefully be heading out there by fall, too. We'll most likely be on the South/East side of the metro - near Parker or SE Aurora, though. Oddly enough, there don't appear to be any Whole Foods Markets in that area (yet). My wife and I are huge fans of theirs as well, but we drive across town to one now, so that may not change when we move out to Aurora.

Given what you have described, it sounds like you're focusing on the North West side of the Denver metro, but you may want to also look near the Southglenn area. The re-development of the old Southglenn Mall into the Streets at Southglenn (one of those outdoor mega lifestyle centers) will include a new 56,000 sq. ft. Whole Foods.

Also, considering the Broomfield area, I think there's likely going to be another 56,000 sq. ft. Whole Foods (even though I've seen nothing confirming this other than a footprint on a site plan) going in at the Northlands near 470 and I-25.

Between the two of us and Front_Range_Guy and Brad, we may be able to get this forum active! :alc:

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One other recommendation that may ease the commute into Downtown Denver - take a look at where the RTD light rail lines are, too, and where they will expand under FasTracks. I intend to drive to a park-and-ride and use the RTD as much as possible when going into Downtown Denver.

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take a look at where the RTD light rail lines are, too, and where they will expand under FasTracks. I intend to drive to a park-and-ride and use the RTD as much as possible when going into Downtown Denver.

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I don't know why so many people moving here consider living in Parker/SE Aurora or on the other extreme of Broomfield, UNLESS that is where you work or have some other need to be there often. Those areas are testaments to sprawl gone way bad, mostly huge expanses of highways, wide, but congested arterial streets, sprawling asphalt parking lots and massive big box and office developements all over the place. Walking in most situations anywhere beyond your immediate neighborhood (if even there) is impossible or daunting. Plus, it's usually not so easy or quick to get downtown or other central Denver areas. The west side of town also offers very easy access into the mountains and foothills. Sometimes I think residents of other metro areas come from regions where they've lived in a similar sprawled out suburb, because other options didn't exist or were too expensive, so that's what they feel comfortable with and only look for that in the Denver area. However, we have decent alternatives.

I highly recommend looking into Lakewood (easy access to downtown by car or express bus and soon the West LRT corridor, depending which part of Lakewood you choose), Wheat Ridge, other closer in communities, or Denver itself. They usually have a wide range of housing styles at different price points and various types of "lifestyles' to choose from (e.g, Belmar or more traditional older neighborhoods). At any rate, I don't suggest buying into the outer edge 'burbs given increasing prices of gas and falling home values of the "typical" suburban shlock home. Anyway, open up your options and explore them carefully before deciding on Parker or Broomfield.

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That's why I said I'm looking at Lakewood, Arvada, etc. :thumbsup: I'm open to anything. We're also looking at Capital Hill and Cheeseman Park areas.

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Just got back from home hunting in the Denver area. Looked at rentals all over and actually settled on an apartment in Golden. My wife fell in love with the small town feel and the proximity to trails will be perfect for her training.

We're very excited about the move and discovering all Denver has to offer.

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Just got back from home hunting in the Denver area. Looked at rentals all over and actually settled on an apartment in Golden. My wife fell in love with the small town feel and the proximity to trails will be perfect for her training.

We're very excited about the move and discovering all Denver has to offer.

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Another thing that may be nice for Golden in a few years is the RTD's Light Rail Western Corridor, which extends between Union Station in LoDo out to the Jefferson County Government Center. I think it's supposed to be complete by 2011 or thereabouts. Construction is already underway on parts of it. The LRT system that's emerging in Denver is one of the main quality of life aspects that has attracted me to the metro. I won't have to go into downtown very often, but if I want to go in to catch a game or a performance or something, it's extremely convenient and cost-effective, not to mention environmentally friendly.

RTD's bus line, on the other hand, is suffering due to the high cost of diesel fuel. I understand they're going to be raising fares and charging for parking to make up for the extra expenses.

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Having moved to the Cheeseman Park/Capital Hill neighborhood in Denver back in November I feel like our city is lucky to have such diverse neighborhoods to live in. I found myself without a car and unable to afford an new one immediately and have experimented with an auto-free lifestyle since then. Honestly, I haven't missed driving at all since and I credit that to an existing urban fabric that has all the elements planners in other cities can only wish for. Within a mile of me are a large park, a real grocery store, a thriving nightlife, music stores, coffee shops, clothing stores, numerous restaurants, and on and on. Target and my particular bank are the only places I ever have to go beyond walking distance to. I come from Grand Rapids, MI and always thought the downtown there was great for a city its size, but Denver puts it to shame. In short, I wanted to give a little praise and appreciation for Denver as a place to live. ;)

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Blindside,

We're loving it here as well. Isn't this winter weather incredible?

We're out in Golden so car free living isn't as easy as it is for you but I've actually managed to get around just fine on occasion when my car was in the shop.

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