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Old 02-18-2009, 07:03 PM
 
4 posts, read 8,562 times
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Thanks in advance for anyone taking the time to respond to my post, I really appreciate it. I've searched the forums for some answers but haven't found quite what I'm looking for.

My fiance and I will be moving to Colorado but she'll be in graduate school at the University of Denver (near Washington Park) and I'll be working for a high tech company in Boulder. Judging from the other posts I've been reading on the forum it seems like the commute isn't too pleasant. At the moment, I'm leaning towards living near the University, but I really don't want to have to deal with a commute that lasts more than 45-50 minutes. According to mapquest it takes roughly that long, but then again traffic isn't factored into that estimate, and not being a local I don't have a feel at all for the traffic.

To be clear, by character/charm I'm referring to could either be an urban place where you have real cultural center or a more scenic rural area. Essentially I don't want to live in a suburban area dotted with McMansions.

Any insight you can give about the commute between Denver and Boulder (at high traffic times) or nice areas to live between the two would be greatly appreciated.

Vikas
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Old 02-18-2009, 07:57 PM
 
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Welcome to the area. I can't tell you much about the commute between Denver and Boulder because I live and work in Boulder. But you may want to research Broomfield and Superior. Broomfield is really a new hot spot, some McMansions but also some nice established neighborhoods with prices around 200,000-275,000. Broomfield has a new event center and decent parks system, parts of Broomfield border open space so the back range views are gorgeous. Superior has really had a lot of development so many McMansions but it borders open space to Boulder so it has beautiful mountain views. Superior single family home prices run 300,000-400,000. Superior has the Flatirons mall and lots of chains but the area is very beautiful. Good Luck!
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Old 02-18-2009, 08:31 PM
 
Location: Denver, CO
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I would select either Boulder or near downtown Denver and then use public transportation (there are several RTD rapid shuttle lines connecting the two cities, then from market street station you can walk to the light rail to get to DU) to get between the two. There is really nothing in between that will meet your specific "charm" criteria. Old Town Arvada is about the closest thing I can think of.
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Old 02-18-2009, 09:14 PM
 
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Thanks for the responses, they were quite helpful.

I'll certainly look into Broomfield and Superior. I also don't mind seeing some planned developments and McMansions in my town, I just don't want to be inundated with them. Currently we're in Maryland, and they are EVERYWHERE.

I'll also check into the RTD as a possible way for my fiance to get to school.

Hopefully I will hear if anyone else has that commute from Denver to Boulder

Thanks again,

Vikas
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Old 02-18-2009, 09:47 PM
 
Location: Denver, CO
5,610 posts, read 21,874,207 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vikaskvatsa View Post
Thanks for the responses, they were quite helpful.

I'll certainly look into Broomfield and Superior. I also don't mind seeing some planned developments and McMansions in my town, I just don't want to be inundated with them. Currently we're in Maryland, and they are EVERYWHERE.

I'll also check into the RTD as a possible way for my fiance to get to school.

Hopefully I will hear if anyone else has that commute from Denver to Boulder

Thanks again,

Vikas
No offense to jessica, but Broomfield and Superior is exactly what you don't what. These two cities for the most part are basically pure tract home master planned suburbia. Louisville has a really tiny "old town" area, but the rest is plain suburbia and Louisville is practically already in the outskirts of Boulder. Westminster & Arvada can be thought of as old, "inner ring" suburbs, although old town Arvada might have what you're looking for.
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Old 02-19-2009, 09:26 AM
 
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I would agree with Vegas that many areas of Broomfield and especially Superior fit the McMansion bland tract suburbia label. This doesn't mean they're not nice, they are, but I wouldn't describe most of either city as having any special character exactly. Mostly beige tract homes, big box stores, and strip malls (lots of nice parks and rec centers and great schools though!).

You might have a look at my neighborhood, Bradburn Village in Westminster. It's a mixed-use, walkable new urbanist neighborhood with neo traditional (Crafstman, Victorian, Prairie, Farmhouse styles) architecture. We have 9 pocket parks, back to huge open space, and have design requirements to fend off the "beige bland cookie cutter" look (although in some cases, that's not entirely successful, it's difficult to do with any tract home builder--we have custom houses too, but only way to get the 100% non cookie cutter look is to have all custom which we don't). We have our own downtown, and you can walk to many services/restaruants/bars/shops and the organic grocer, Sprouts.

From Westminster, Boulder is a 20 or so minute commute. You can get to University of Denver by taking express bus from the 120th park n ride to Union Station (25 min) then the light rail to the University (about 15-20 min). We have fairly good public transit from this location, I use it alll the time (I hate driving which is one of the reasons I live here).

Know however, this neighborhood is super, super social. It's like a small town where everyone knows each other. Lots of kids. If either of those things bother you, not a good fit.

Areas around the University btw are very nice and have character, but would make the Boulder commute about 1 hour (by car in rush hour, longer if it snows).

You might also have a look at the Highlands neighborhood east of downtown, that would be more equal distance between the two. Is a cool, hip neighborhood with a little downtown with great shops/restaurants. To Boulder about 30-40 minutes, to U of D, about 30 min in rush hour. Much higher prices for houses though. Not sure if you are looking to buy/rent and in what price range.
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Old 02-19-2009, 05:30 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bradburn1 View Post
You might also have a look at the Highlands neighborhood east of downtown, that would be more equal distance between the two. Is a cool, hip neighborhood with a little downtown with great shops/restaurants. To Boulder about 30-40 minutes, to U of D, about 30 min in rush hour. Much higher prices for houses though. Not sure if you are looking to buy/rent and in what price range.
Highlands seems like the obvious choice for you, actually. If you live on the eastern side of Highlands (just across from DT), you could walk to union station for a bus ride to Boulder, or take one of the many feeder buses that all cross the 15th street bridge on their way to market street station.

Another option would be in Berkeley neighborhood, close to the Tennyson Street & W 44th Ave area, though that would probably be better for a car-based commute to Boulder than transit.
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Old 02-19-2009, 07:06 PM
 
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It will always be easy to get to the University of Denver by Rail since they have a commuter rail station, adjacent to the campus. The difficulty is a job in Boulder because more than likely you would have to drive because it would not be a easy by public transit unless it was within a walkable area of a bus stop, either Route B, Boulder/Denver, or the frequent circular buses--you will have to check.

Given these issues I would look into living near a Park n' Ride that serves Route B along I-36. The Westminster Park n' Ride is ideal because the B bus to Denver makes no other stops until Union Station and from there you can get the commuter rail to the University of Denver. Route B runs from early morning to late at night, very frequently, so it really acts as like a commuter rail. In addition, the stops along I-36 have more express buses that go downtown in the early morning and more coming back in the afternoon and early evening and these buses go directly to Market Street Station which is close to the commuter rail lines.

Given your desires, there are some nice neighborhoods west of the Westminster Park and Ride off of west 88th and down to West 80th. The Lake Arbor neighborhood off of Wadsworth and 80th is appealing or you can look further west on 88th and live near Standley Lake. These are very good established neighborhoods.

Another Park n' Ride Location which would work would be the Church Ranch Exit off of I-36. This is also served by Route B. The area around is great because it is near the very large Westminster City Park and the Amenities.

Livecontent
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Old 02-19-2009, 08:47 PM
 
Location: WA
116 posts, read 387,958 times
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Louisville and Lafayette are both "charming" towns, IMO, but they may add to both of your commutes a bit. Certain areas of Broomfield, Superior and Westminster might be more ideal, as far as your commute is concerned. And if you pick the right spots, they may be just as charming. Keep in mind, towns like Westminster are very long and patchy and vary drastically when it comes to type of neighborhoods. A Westminster address could put you on the north side near I-25 or it could put you near 36.
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Old 02-21-2009, 05:19 PM
 
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Wow. That was all incredibly useful information. From all of your comments I'm certainly going to check out the Highlands neighborhood -- it seems like our best bet.

I really appreciate everyone's help, and I know feel that I have a good, basic feel of where we are gonna live.

Thanks!

Vikas
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