The Globeville, Elyria and Swansea neighborhoods are located in North Denver – major physical landmarks include Interstate 25, Interstate 70 and the South Platte River. (Globeville map). Historically, Globeville, Elyria, and Swansea were home to large industry, especially smelting and meat packing. Eastern European immigrants settled in the area and worked in the local industries. Today, a strong industrial presence remains, as does an established community, including a majority Latino population. All three neighborhoods have home ownership rates that are higher than the Denver average. While strong community ties and civic pride bolster the neighborhood, the area’s infrastructure and connectivity can be problematic for mobility, health and quality of life. The neighborhoods are anticipating major investments, including four new rail stations, Interstate 70 improvements and a new vision for the National Western Stock Show – a land area of some 95 acres that hosts an annual, historic event for 16 days in January.
A planning process for Globeville began in June 2012 and for Elyria-Swansea in January 2013. These planning processes involve looking comprehensively at a vision for the future of these neighborhoods. The neighborhood plans will ultimately be adopted by the Denver City Council and will serve as official policy for future decision making on both land use, urban design and infrastructure AND will identify key partnerships that will aid in realizing the vision contained within the official plan.
Guiding principles were developed in the early stages of the process and serve as guideposts for recommendations that will be developed throughout the planning process:
- A Strong Community – parks & open space, housing, jobs, and services
- A Connected Neighborhood – transit, automobile, bike and pedestrian networks
- A Healthy Neighborhood – air, odor, noise and ground pollution and healthy eating active living
- A Unique Neighborhood - history, culture, and urban design
Each principle brings value to the planning process and is guided by strong community collaboration made up of residents, business owners, property owners and nonprofits. It’s only with ongoing, meaningful participation that a planning process can be successful and effective.