Denver’s Streetcar Legacy and its Role in Neighborhood Walkability
Contact: Ryan Keeney, University of Denver – Master of Science Department
Source: Keeney, Ryan. June 2017.
Many people, even longtime residents of the city, would be surprised to learn that Denver once had a world class public transportation system in the form of streetcars. These street railways existed for 78 years of the city’s history and at its height their tracks once densely covered a large portion of the modern city proper.
Although long gone today, evidence abounds of the streetcar’s presence in the city, mainly in the form of old commercial strips lining arterials like Colfax and Broadway, and embedded in neighborhoods on streets like South Pearl and Tennyson.
This legacy in the built environment is not only valuable for its history and aesthetic. It also contributes to the walkability of Denver’s neighborhoods. Because these developments are scattered in close proximity to residences, more people are within walking distance to many types of businesses and services than they otherwise would be.
The streetcar, its legacy, and the impact of that legacy on neighborhood walkability is the subject of this Story Map. First up are the streetcar routes.”