Located only 15 minutes northeast of Denver, the Stapleton community sprawls over the area formerly occupied by Stapleton International Airport. Named for former mayor of Denver, Benjamin F. Stapleton, the location was Denver’s primary airport from the 1930s until 1995 when it was replaced by the newly-built, much larger Denver International Airport. After its closure in 1995 the airfield was slated to be completely redeveloped as a residential community and business area.
Today, the redevelopment has been going along strongly and Stapleton is already a well-established neighborhood. Recently named one of Natural Home Magazine’s “Top Ten Green Neighborhoods,” the community was built with a strong pedestrian focus to reduce automobile use and traffic. There is also a heavy focus on outdoor activities. Stapleton features over 50 parks with 10 more coming soon. Additionally, there is a commuter rail line slated to be completed in 2016 with the added benefit of connecting Stapleton to the rest of the Denver Metro area. Each park features different amenities including playgrounds, sports fields, pavilions, BBQs, trails, skate parks, and much, much more (1).
The area is close to the Bluff Lake Nature Center, a 123 acre urban wildlife refuge with trails and a nature center that plays host to 40,000 visitors a year. The center also offers a summer fireside chat series and week-long Junior Naturalist camps held throughout the months of June, July, and August. Not only is this attraction free, it exhibits many of Colorado’s natural ecosystems, including short-grass prairie, a riparian zone, and a wetland woodland. As such, a variety of animals have found refuge at the center, most notably waterfowl, shorebirds, deer, fox, beavers, and reptiles. The Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge, a 15,000 acre expanse that provides environmental education as well as hiking, is also situated in Stapleton. More than 330 species can be found in the refuge, including animals seldom seen in Colorado such as white pelicans and owls. The amount of visitors keeps increasing, with a record amount of traction in 2013 with 300,000 visitors. Finally, there is the Sand Creek Regional Greenway, a 14 mile trail network that connects to the Platte River to the west, Highline Canal to the east, and Westerly Creek in Stapleton proper (1).
Other enjoyable community aspects of Stapleton include multiple pools, a plethora of eye popping public artwork, and a full calendar of community events that range from parades and celebrations to farmer’s markets. If there’s a holiday, the city of Stapleton is celebrating it as a community in some way. Furthering its commitment to youth, the area also has a number of schools available for children of all ages, with more facilities slated to open in the near future. As the community continues to expand, its fun and family friendly atmosphere has been preserved.
The hub of Stapleton is the Shops at Northfield Stapleton outdoor shopping center. With large anchor stores such as JC Penny and Macy’s, the area is a popular place for both big-name brands and locally owned boutiques. Dining and entertainment in the area are also superb. Grab some sushi at the Zen Asian Sushi Bar, or a beer at the Stapleton Tap House, which has over 30 beers on tap. For an evening out, the Improv Comedy Club and Dinner Theatre offers some of the best live comedy that Denver has to offer. They offer the chance for locals to offer their brand of humor, as well as hosting more recognizable names, such as Bill Bellamy, Dave Landau, and Tom Dustin. Whatever you’re looking for, Stapleton offers a plethora of community activities, some great trails and animal sanctuaries for nature lovers, and a slew of local restaurants, shops, and businesses (2).
Stapleton – Real Estate Snapshot
A rich blend of diverse, newer architecture spans the gamut from the traditional Denver Square to Colonials to inspiring modern design. Condominiums, brownstones and duplexes also line the bustling streets filled with joggers, moms and dads pushing strollers, and residents out for leisurely walks with their dogs. Real estate prices span from entry-level condos to stately homes in the million-dollar price range.