Sunnyside neighborhood plan

Material Information

Sunnyside neighborhood plan
City and County of Denver
Place of Publication:
Denver, CO
City and County of Denver
Publication Date:

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Auraria Library
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Auraria Library
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Copyright [name of copyright holder or Creator or Publisher as appropriate]. Permission granted to University of Colorado Denver to digitize and display this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.

Full Text

This is the official plan for the Sunnyside neighborhood,
bounded on the west by Federal Boulevard, on the north by
Interstate 70, on the east by Inca Street, and on the south
by West 38th Avenue. The area contains 911 acres, ap-
proximately 4,000 dwelling units and over 11,000 resi-
Sunnyside has been selected for preparation of a
neighborhood plan for several reasons. First, the
neighborhood contains one of the areas designated as
blighted" by the Community Renewal Program (CRP) in
1972. Sunnyside was a Model Cities neighborhood and is
a Community Development (CD) priority neighborhood.
Finally, since Sunnyside contains some deteriorated
housing, changing ethnic populations and stagnating
business areas, a Plan should be helpful in conservation
and stabilization of the neighborhood.
In June, 1976, a 15-member citizen advisory team was
formed to work with the neighborhood planner to develop a
plan. The planning team includes residents, property own-
ers, neighborhood business representatives, and civic
leaders concerned with neighborhood improvement. The
group participated in weekly meetings throughout the
summer of 1976 which focused on land use and zoning,
housing, public facilities, transportation and new develop-
ment, both public and private, in and adjacent to the
The Plan consists of this text and an accompanying map
entitled "Sunnyside Neighborhood Plan." Detailed infor-
mation about socio-economic characteristics, land use
and zoning, public facilities and transportation, upon which
the Plan is based, may be obtained from the Denver Plan-
ning Office. 2
The Sunnyside Neighborhood Plan provides an official
guide to new development, redevelopment and conserva-
tion of the neighborhood over the next five years for use by
the Denver Planning Office, the Mayor, the City Council
and other concerned governmental agencies, as well as
residents, property owners and private organizations con-
cerned with planning and neighborhood improvement. At
the same time, the Plan provides an immediate action
program by identifying resources that may help meet
neighborhood needs. Finally, since the City and the
neighborhood collaborated in preparing the Plan, it is ex-
pected that the City agencies and residents will work to-
gether toward plan implementation.
The Plan is intended to promote an arrangement of land
use, circulation and services which will encourage and
contribute to the economic, social and physical health,
safety, welfare and convenience of the neighborhood
within the larger framework of the City. It is further intended
to guide development and change to meet existing and
anticipated needs and conditions; to contribute to a healthy
and pleasant environment; to balance growth and stability;
to reflect economic potentialities and limitations, and to
protect investment to the extent reasonable and feasible.
The Plan is not an official zone map and, as a guide, does
not imply an implicit right to a particular zone or to the land
uses permitted therein. Changes of zone are considered
under a specific procedure established under the City and
County of Denver Municipal Code, subject to various re-
quirements set forth therein.

Objectives of the Plan
To coordinate the improvement, selective redevelop-
ment, and preservation of the neighborhood with that of
other parts of the City, particularly the adjacent
neighborhoods of Highland, Berkeley and Chaffee Park.
To encourage the cooperation of business owners and
managers to rejuvenate and develop the neighborhood
business areas.
To concentrate future commercial and industrial de-
velopment in areas presently zoned for these uses.
To protect residential areas from detrimental effects of
traffic and business and industrial uses.
To provide incentives for the preservation and im-
provement of the existing housing and to encourage
home ownership.
To promote the economic, health and convenience of
the neighborhood through:
The maintenance and upgrading of present public
facilities and services with addition of any facilities
needed to better serve the residents.
The deliberate action of residents and the City to
discourage transiency and encourage longer tenure.
Establishment of an ongoing group of neighborhood
residents interested in and responsible for the im-
plementation of the Plan and for monitoring future
Improvement of the neighborhood, including en-
hancement of the visual environment and air quality,
reduction of noise levels, and innovative use of
unkempt vacant land.
To improve the transportation system by:
Providing a circulation system that would route major
vehicular movement around the neighborhood and
yet supply adequate internal circulation.
Encouraging public transportation and other transpor-
tation modes (bicycle routes, pedestrian paths, etc.)
that would provide mobility as an alternative to the
To provide for cooperation and coordination between
the City and County of Denver and the various political
jurisdictions involved in the urban planning process in-
cluding the Denver Public School District, the Colorado
Department of Highways, the Denver Housing Author-
ity, and the Regional Transportation District.
Before any major housing development occurred in Sun-
nyside, the area west of Pecos Street was occupied by
small truck farms, orchards, and undeveloped land. In
1879, the northeast corner of the neighborhood was incor-
porated as the town of Argo. As a "company town, Argo
was settled primarily by Swedes who worked at the smelter
and by others who worked for the Moffatt Railroad.
Sunnyside became a part of the City through three annexa-
tions. The first two occurred under the Colorado Session
Laws of 1883 and 1889. The third took place when the town
of Argo was dissolved and merged with Denver in 1902.
Therefore, the housing in Sunnyside is a mixture of many
types, ages, and periods of architecture, with the older
housing primarily east of Pecos Street.
During the 1940s, the northern portion of Sunnyside was
occupied by QuonsetTown. Quonset huts, prefabricated
shelters made of corrugated metal shaped like half a cylin-
der resting on its side, were built here by the Defense
Department to alleviate the housing shortage experienced
after World War II. After the quonset huts were de-
molished, this area remained vacant for many years.
Since the 1950s, Sunnyside has been in a period of
change. The Quigg Newton Homes, a public housing proj-
ect, was constructed in the 1950's. In the last 25 years,
industrial encroachment has occurred along its eastern
edge, replacing some residential development.
Finally, in the mid-l960s, Interstate 70, a six-lane limited
access freeway, was built along the northern edge of Sun-
nyside, isolating the Chaffee Park and Regis neighbor-
hoods from the rest of northwest Denver. At the time, there
was opposition to the alignment by citizens who felt the
freeway should have been located at the Citys northern
Sunnyside experienced substantial growth in population
from 1950 to 1960, but since 1960 the population has been
gradually declining. The number of housing units, on the
other hand, has remained relatively constant over the
same time period.
SOURCE: Based on 1950,1960 and 1970 U.S. Census
figures and Denver Planning Office estimates
for 1975 and 1976 and forecasts for 1980.
While a slight population decline in the 1970 to 1980 period
is forecast, the population appears to be stabilizing some-
what. This is evidenced by the smaller absolute decreases
in population that are forecast for the next five years as
compared with the previous five-year period.

Since the number of occupied housing units has been
virtually the same since 1950, the population decrease in
the neighborhood can be almost totally attributed to the
steady decline in household size. Sunnysides average
household size continues to decline since 1960, but still
remains higher than the City average.
The remainder of the decline in Sunnysides population
since 1960 is probably due to a gradual increase in the
proportion of multi-family units, which generally have a
lower average household size than single-family units.
Major population shifts are also apparent in Sunnyside
since 1950, reflecting similar shifts in northwest Denver.
The causes of the transition are probably the interaction of
three factors: 1) an aging housing stock, 2) good terms on
Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and Veterans Ad-
ministration (VA) mortgages on new suburban houses,
and 3) the expansion of the Chicano population in Denver
as well as displacement from other areas of the City.
Middle-income Anglo families were gradually replaced by
low-to moderate-income Chicano families. In 1970 near-
ly 50% of the population in Sunnyside was Spanish-
surname, which was a dramatic shift from the over 98%
Anglo composition in 1950. Since Sunnysides public
school enrollment figures show the number of minority
students is increasing each year, the neighborhoods
minority population may today represent closer to 60% of
the total population.
in terms of age proportions, the population of Sunnyside
reflects the pattern of the City as a whole, with a gradual
shift in the last two decades to an older population. Sun-
nyside also experienced an increase in the 18-34 year
category from 1960, but remained below the Citys aver-
age. Finally, Sunnyside had larger percentages of pre-
school and school-age children than the City averages in
Median family income in Sunnyside rose from $5,748 in
1960 to an estimated $10,040 in 1975. The significant
point, however, is that while median family income in Sun-
nyside has climbed in absolute dollars, it has fallen further
behind the City wide norm. It should be noted that many of
the lower income families reside in the Quigg Newton
Overall, the residents of Sunnyside have lower incomes
and fewer years of formal education than the City as a
whole. The neighborhood also contains larger percen-
tages of minority families, more blue-collar workers, more
persons below the poverty level, larger percentages of
families receiving public assistance, more female-headed
households, and more housing units with no auto available
as compared to Denver. These conditions especially
characterize the Quigg Newton Homes.
Since 1950, because of their limited means, the remaining
elderly Anglo families and the new Chicano families could
not, in all cases, provide the substantial maintenance and
rehabilitation work that aging dwellings require. Therefore,
cases of spot deterioration began to occur. In 1955, major
portions of the neighborhood were zoned R-2, allowing
some households to convert their single-family homes to
two- or three-unit structures. It is possible that these con-
versions, rather than being detrimental to overall housing
conditions, have allowed lower-income and elderly resi-
dents to maintain their homes with rental income and re-
main in the neighborhood. Even though many owners re-
mained in these converted structures, such conversions
can increase the wear and tear on houses and can lead to
instability, as renters generally move more often than
Combined, these factors led to some deterioration of hous-
ing and further instability which diminished the residential
desirability of Sunnyside, and thus made it more difficult to
obtain mortgages on reasonable terms. The problems with
housing deterioration and home financing remain, but the
neighborhood has experienced a revival since 1972. New
families are moving in and are showing interest in renova-
tion of the older homes. Today, only isolated areas show
need for exterior rehabilitation, but some major interior
renovation may be needed in homes throughout Sun-
Nearly half of the housing stock in Sunnyside was built
prior to 1940. The 1972 Community Renewal Program
classified the neighborhood as blighted, with most of the
blighted and deteriorated blocks identified in the southeast
quadrant. While there is evidence that housing is being
repaired and renovated the following problem areas do
remain in the neighborhood:
W. 38th Avenue to W. 44th Avenue, Jason Street to
Lipan Street,some of the housing is mixed with vacant
lots, industrial uses, and older housing.
W. 38th Avenue to W. 39th Avenue, on Pecos Street
vacant lots and abandoned houses with pressure for
business zoning.
Block bounded by W. 44th Avenue, Pecos Street, W.
46th Avenue, and Navajo Streetlarge vacant lots, de-
teriorating houses, pressure to rezone to industrial.
On W. 44th Avenue, Zuni to Tejon Street, and on Tejon
Street south of W. 44th Avenueresidential uses mixed
with businesses and non-conforming industrial uses.
More than 10% of the housing in Sunnyside is publicly-
assisted, low-income housing primarily located in the
James Quigg Newton Homes (400 units) in the northeast
section of the neighborhood. The majority of these apart-
ments are 2-bedroom units which house over 1,000 per-
sons from low-income elderly and minority families.
Throughout the neighborhood 30 "dispersed housing
units have been built by the Denver Housing Authority
(DHA) for low-income residents.
According to the latest figures compiled in the Planning
Office, Sunnysides average actual property values (land
and improvements) are significantly lower than the Citys
mean values. In general, though, these low values and
rents are characteristic of northwest Denver and do not
necessarily indicate lower quality or worse housing condi-
tion. In fact, the gap between the Citys average housing
value and Sunnysides has leveled off and is no longer
widening. Renewed interest in the unique, older homes

and in lower housing costs offered in Sunnyside and the
remainder of northwest Denver may spur an increase in
sales and appreciation in value. Average housing rent for
the neighborhood is also very low. Rents in the Ouigg
Newton Homes (average only $50/month) significantly
lowered the neighborhoods average.
Since only 1% of available vacant land is residentially-
zoned, it is not surprising that only 12 new housing struc-
tures have been built since 1970. With an average of six
building permits per month, the primary building activity
has been for repairing, remodeling and additions to
residential structures.
Between 1971 and 1975, over 650 housing structures in
Sunnyside were bought and sold (some probably more
than once). Most of these real estate transactions, accord-
ing to realtors, involved government-insured mortgages
with few conventional loans. Most of the government-
insured mortgages were guaranteed by the Veterans Ad-
ministration (VA), the chief source of financing in the inner
city, rather than by the Federal Housing Administration
(FHA), another major source of inner city financing,
Another major problem is that financial institutions are less
inclined to make loans for home buying east of Federal, as
opposed to west of Federal, because the eastern
neighborhoods are regarded as more unstable and more
deteriorated, and thus considered higher risks. When con-
ventional loans are offered, prospective home buyers may
be unable to afford the higher interest rates and down
payments. In addition, lending institutions are less willing
to make loans for homes that have been converted to two
or more units.
With financing so difficult to obtain, owners and prospec-
tive buyers of homes must resort to one of two options: 1)
the seller decides to move anyway but to rent the home or
2) special private financing must be arrangede.g.
"owner carry back," third-party loan, purchase contract,
loan with substantial collateral, or second mortgages. The
first alternative is probably more detrimental to the
neighborhood because generally renters dont have as
great an incentive to maintain the homes or yards or to help
improve the neighborhood. The second alternative may be
more costly, inconvenient and risky for both seller, buyer
and lender than other forms of financing.
The willingness of financial institutions to invest in an area
is a sign of a healthy neighborhood. There are several
housing-related actions that could be taken to stabilize
Sunnyside and that are generally important considerations
to financial institutions in making loans.
Improve external appearance of the neighborhood
The problem of deteriorating houses can be aided by
offering rehabilitation loans and providing grants to low
income home owners (especially to elderly households
on fixed incomes). These are available under the Hous-
ing and Community Development Act of 1974. Also,
some external code enforcement could help with prob-
lems of unkempt grounds and external disrepair.
Selective spot acquisition, rehabilitation and resale by
the Denver Urban Renewal AuthorityThis may be
needed in certain areas to encourage further private
Increase owner occupancySome lenders emphasize
pride of ownership and apparently have an 80% rule in
making loans (80% of the homes on the block have to be
owner-occupied). Financing must be made available for
prospective buyers of Sunnyside houses to help solve
this problem. The availability of three local programs
(Loans to Lenders, Lenders Mortgage Corporation, and
the Shared Risk Pool) to supply mortgages to
moderate-income families for older homes should be
publicized to realtors, sellers of homes, and prospective
buyers. Realtors in northwest Denver report the need to
be informed about these new kinds of loans that might
be available.
Changes in zoningLenders frequently like to have
some assurance that the block will not change. Chang-
ing the zoning from R-2 to R-1 in some parts of Sun-
nyside may be a sign to lenders that steps will be taken
to maintain the blocks in single-family residential use.
The R-1 zoning prohibits conversion and would help
preserve single-family houses,
Historic Preservation
Sunnyside has fewer architecturally significant older
homes than Highland or Jefferson Park neighborhoods
because it is a relatively younger neighborhood. Yet, the
Denver Inventory, a document of historic structures com-
piled in 1974 by the Denver Planning Office with assist-
ance from Historic Denver, Inc., lists 35 structures in Sun-
nyside as having some degree of historic or architectural
significance. However, on the basis of available informa-
tion, none have qualified for landmark designation under
the provisions of the Denver Landmark Preservation Ordi-
nance. The neighborhood will soon be resurveyed and
some structures may qualify for landmark status. Non-
residential structures presently included in the inventory
list are the Columbian Elementary School, Smedley
Elementary School, Horace Mann Junior High School, and
the Way of the Cross Church.
Land Use and Zoning
Sunnyside is a relatively large neighborhood in terms of
land area and provides a variety of land uses. The net land
area (excluding streets, highways and alleys), is 623
acres. The major land use in the neighborhood is residen-
tial, with single family uses accounting for over four-fifths of
the residential land.
The majority of commercial and office uses are located in
strip fashion along the arterials and collectors within or
bordering the neighborhood. Some of these business es-
tablishments are vacant or experience fairly frequent turn-
over in ownership and use. There are no major shopping
centers in the neighborhood. Services and commercial
goods provided by the neighborhood shops are recog-
nized by residents as real assets for Sunnyside. The small
neighborhood business development along Tejon Street
appears to be the most successful. Along W. 38th Avenue
business uses are scattered between pockets of generally
well-maintained, single-family housing. Along W. 44th Av-
enue, some light industrial and commercial uses

Isnin sn i nrmreipmH orra srn^
,---------LAND USE----------sv
l~ ~l VACANT

V--------- J

MARCH, 1976

primarily used car lots and auto body and engine shops
are mixed with other more neighborhood-oriented busi-
ness uses. The problem of unattractive, mixed business
has been partly caused by a B-4 zone that was gradually
extended from the east into the neighborhood in the 1950s
and 60s.
Industrial development has occurred during the past 20
years primarily along the northern and eastern edges of the
neighborhood. A distribution center and ceramic plant,
several large trucking firms, and a noodle and macaroni
plant are industrial uses found in Sunnyside. These indus-
trial enterprises, as well as those north of Interstate 70
provide convenient jobs for some skilled and unskilled
residents of Sunnyside.
Most of the industrial firms appear to be thriving, with a
substantial amount of vacant industrial land still available.
The industrial area lacks landscaped buffers directly adja-
cent to the Quigg Newton Homes and is mixed with hous-
ing along Jason and Kalamath Streets. The associated
truck traffic, noise, parking, and unsightly appearance of
the industrial uses are disturbing to many residents of the
In 1955, most of Sunnyside was rezoned to R-2, probably
under the assumption that this zone would allow and en-
courage conversion of single-family units into double or
triple units. Today, single-family units still remain. Much of
the land zoned for multi-units continues to be occupied by
single-family uses.
Another (and use/zoning discrepancy occurs in the indus-
trial category. Almost twice as much land is zoned for
industrial than is actually used -with many vacant par-
cels and residential uses located in the industrially-zoned
areas. Also, when actual land use is compared with zoning,
within the industrial category, it is apparent that more than
half of the heavy industrial zone is used for light industrial
There have been fourteen rezoning requests in the Sun-
nyside neighborhood since 1970, seven of which were
approved. The majority of the requests proposed changes
from residential to an industrial or business zone. Four
of the proposals asked for a change from single-family
to either business or higher density zones. One case in-
volved a downzoning," from industrial to residential.
Transportation facilities provide for the movement of
people and goods. Sunnyside possesses various forms of
transportation facilitiessidewalks, buses, streets, a
major freeway, and rail lines.
Four categories defined by the Comprehensive Plan are
used by the City for purposes of describing and planning
highways and streets, based on their function, access,
width, volume of traffic, adjacent land use, etc.:
Local Streetshave the function of providing direct ac-
cess to adjacent properties and of carrying low volumes
of traffic (less than 2,000 vehicles per day) with an origin
or destination within the neighborhood (e.g. W. 43rd
Avenue, Bryant Street).
Collector Streetshave the function of collecting and
distributing traffic having an origin or destination be-
tween arterial and local streets within the community
and linking neighborhood residential areas, local and
community shopping facilities, and other major com-
munity land use elements. Collectors have an average
capacity of 5,000 to 12,000 vehicles per day. (e.g. W.
46th Avenue, Zuni Street).
Arterial Streetshave the function of permitting rapid
and relatively unimpeded traffic movement throughout
the City and serving as the primary link between com-
munities and major land use elements. Some, like Fed-
eral Boulevard, may also be state highways. The aver-
age traffic volumes may range from 17,500-35,000 ve-
hicles per day (e.g. W. 38th Avenue, Federal Boulevard).
Freewayshave the function of permitting traffic to flow
rapidly and unimpeded through and around the met-
ropolitan area (e.g. Interstate 70).
The specific street classifications* for the neighborhood
are shown on the following map, along with average week-
day traffic volumes.
00% CHANGE 1971 TO 1975
In addition to being an arterial street, Federal Boulevard is
designated as a parkway by the Revised Municipal Code,
but has not been developed as such. A parkway is defined
in the Comprehensive Plan as a public street landscaped
in a park-like manner with grass, shrubs and other plant-
ings either in a median strip or on side planting areas, or
both. The primary purpose of landscaping along the street
is to provide, in varying degrees, an environment more
pleasant than that of an ordinary street.
A comparison of the 1971 and 1975 average weekday
traffic indicates that many of the streets in and around
Sunnyside carried fewer vehicles in 1975 than four years
*As classified according to their present characteristics, by the Depart-
j ment of Public Works.

As expected, traffic volume on 1-70 has increased since
1971, with increases also on Federal Boulevard just north
and south of the freeway. Consequently, residents indicate
that left turns off of Federal Boulevard onto both W. 38th
Avenue and W. 44th Avenue are quite difficult because no
left turn signals exist.
Pecos Street currently is classified as an arterial and is
carrying daily volumes in excess of the collector street
volume range. Continued designation of the corridor will be
dependent upon the future of the 20th Street viaduct which
connects to the CBD. Residents feel that the present vol-
ume of traffic on Pecos Street poses a threat to school
children who must cross the street to attend three of the
neighborhood schools, and isolates the already deterior-
ated eastern portion of the neighborhood. The potential
Pecos-Osage one-way pair would increase this barrier
Colorado Department of Highways plans for Interstate
I-76, a highway to serve as an east-west route north of the
city limits, includes a proposal for an interchange at Pecos
Street. Further traffic volume increases through both High-
land and Sunnyside neighborhoods could result from the
construction of such an interchange.
Bike Routes
Not only Sunnyside, but virtually the entire northwest
community, is without bike routes. The nearest route cir-
cles Rocky Mountain Lake, with others circling Sloan Lake
and Berkeley Lake. New routes should be provided to
connect Sunnyside with these major parks in northwest
Denver. Also, the routes should increase access to public
facilities in and near the neighborhood and should tie in
with the Platte River Greenway and North High School.
Finally, connections to other sections of the City, especially
to the Central Business District, should be seriously
Mass Transit
Many Sunnyside residents are transit dependent and must
rely heavily or solely on public mass transit. The concentra-
tions of low-income, minority, elderly residents and youth,
especially in and near the Quigg Newton Homes, indicate
the need for convenient bus service and transit facilities.
There are problems with the locations of the routes. First,
the # 13 route should be reexamined in light of the need to
serve the proposed senior housing at W. 38th Avenue and
Alcott Street. The bus passes two blocks west of the site on
Clay Street. Residents report a need for a northwest Den-
ver circulator bus system to take them to employment,
education, shopping, health, cultural and recreation
facilities. None of the routes in the neighborhood intersect
and the #5 route is the only one to run the full length or
width of the neighborhood.
Truck Prohibitions
Truck traffic through the residential areas is a problem
because of industrial and commercial development in and
around the neighborhood, Interstate 70 has no truck pro-
hibitions, and therefore, all through-truck traffic including
those carrying explosives and flammable liquids are al-
lowed. W. 38th Avenue and Federal Boulevard are desig-
nated as Class 2 truck routes (routes approved for all
trucks except those carrying explosive or through flamma-
ble tankers). Portions of some residential streets also carry
Class 2 designations.
#1 route approved for all trucks including those carrying
explosives and flammable liquids.
#2 route approved for all trucks except those through-trucks
carrying explosives and flammable liquids.
#3 route prohibits through trucks over 7,000 pounds empty
Generally, residential streets, interior to the neighborhood
carry Class 3 designation, which prohibits through-trucks
over 7,000 pounds empty weight. There appears little, if
any, justification for allowing heavy trucks to use predom-
inantly residential streets within the neighborhood when
alternate routes are available and have much less impact
on residential development. An exception is the eastern
portion where trucks have, at present, no logical way to get
through the neighborhood, especially from the south.
Because of the industrial uses on the eastern side of the
neighborhood, residents report heavy truck traffic along W.
46th Avenue and Lipan Street near the Quigg Newton
Homes. Through special efforts, by Traffic Engineering,
Lipan Street was recently posted to restrict truck traffic.
However, it should be emphasized that all of these truck
prohibitions are only effective if they are strictly enforced.
Community Facilities
Parks and Open Space
Four parks are located in Sunnyside. Chaffee Park con-
tains 4.5 acres and has several developed ballfields and a
basketball/volleyball multi-purpose area. Ciancio Park, ad-
jacent to Horace Mann Junior High, consists of 5 acres and
provides ballfields and a junior football field. Columbus
Park (or LaRaza Park, as many residents call it) has 2.3
acres and contains an outdoor swimming pool, one tennis
court/basketball area, a playground, and a shelter. An
unnamed park located at W. 46th Avenue and Pecos
Street next to the Remington Elementary School play-
ground, contains approximately 3.5 acres and consists
only of informal ball fields.

One additional city-owned parcel available for future park
development is located north of the new Aztlan Recre-
ation Center, Presently, the parcel is undeveloped and less
than an acre in size, Finally, McDonough Park, consisting
of 3.7 acres, lies just west of Federal Boulevard. Bicycle
and pedestrian access to this park and three large com-
munity parksRocky Mountain, Berkeley, and Sloan
Lakeis difficult because of the need to cross heavy traffic
on Federal Boulevard.
In addition, the three elementary schools and Horace
Mann Junior High provide approximately eight acres of
additional open space, playgrounds and ballfields for pub-
lic use. Four tennis courts are located at Horace Mann but
appear to be poorly maintained and, consequently, are
As a general guideline, 2.5 acres of neighborhood park
land is desirable to serve each 1,000 population. Using this
guideline, the Sunnyside neighborhood would require ap-
proximately 28 acres of neighborhood park land. Including
the school playgrounds and McDonough Park, the 28 acre
need is fulfilled. Further development of the school play-
grounds is needed to make them a more valuable recrea-
tion resource for the neighborhood.
It should be noted that while, overall, there is sufficient park
acreage, all available parks and open spaces are either
east of Tejon Street or along Federal Boulevard, leaving
more than half the neighborhood with poor access to
parks. Unfortunately, vacant land is also scarce on this
side of the neighborhood. More park space may be needed
around the Aztlan Recreation Center due to the concentra-
tion of population in the Quigg Newton Homes.
Recreation and Community Centers
Sunnyside has a new recreation center and a senior center
that was converted from the former recreation center. Both
the Aztlan Recreation Center, which opened in late 1976,
and the senior center are located next to Quigg Newton
housing area.
The Aztlan Recreation Center contains approximately
10,000 square feet and is a standard junior recreation
center with gymnasium, game room, exercise room, office
space and multi-purpose room which can be used for
community meetings. The old recreation center, now serv-
ing as a senior center, is owned by the Denver Housing
Authority and contains a kitchen, offices, and several meet-
ing spaces of different sizes. A private senior citizens
group, the Twilighter Club, coordinates activities with the
Department of Parks and Recreation at the center. In addi-
tion, the director of Aztlan assists a part-time recreation
program called the North Denver Recreation Center at
Remington Elementary School. A new senior center at
38th and Alcott will contain approximately 7,000 square
feet; Denver Catholic Community Services, Inc. will ar-
range activities at the center for senior citizens from the
area. This center will complement the-78 unit Denver Hous-
ing Authority high rise for the elderly.
Residents of the Quigg Newton Homes have been working
for some time to obtain a commitment for an enclosed
swimming pool at Aztlan. Residents also want more ac-
cess to the enclosed pools at North High School and at
Skinner Junior High.
The nearest community center, Northside, located in the
Highland neighborhood, is accessible to Sunnyside resi-
dents. A child care center, senior program, various kinds of
classes, recreational activities, and social services are
available there. A school-sized cafeteria provides meals
for groups using the center and offers meeting space to the
surrounding community,
The Denver School District plans an addition to and reno-
vation of Horace Mann Junior High, under the School
Districts six-year building program.
If Columbian Elementary School is replaced with a new
school it should be located on the eastern edge of the site,
at some distance from heavily-trafficked Federal Boule-
Also located in Sunnyside are St. Catherines, a Catholic
elementary school located at 4200 Federal (282 students),
and Faith Elementary, affiliated with the Faith Lutheran
Church at W. 47th Avenue and Eliot Street (135 students).
Residents use the Woodbury Library, at W. 32nd Avenue
and Federal Boulevard. Bookmobile service is provided
once a week at Smedley Elementary School. Residents
indicate that the bookmobile does not come often enough
or at a convenient time for working adults.
There are approximately 10-15 churches in the area, some
of which are small neighborhood churches. The Neighbor-
hood House Church of God at W. 43rd and Lipan provides
meeting space and some social service assistance. The
Faith Lutheran Church provides a tutorial service for chil-
dren, and parishioners are presently investigating ways to
provide further service to the community.
Police Protection
The Sunnyside neighborhood is located in District 1, head-
quartered at W. 22nd and Decatur, and contains three
precincts, 109, 110 and 113.
Crime statistics indicate that in 1974, Sunnyside had ap-
proximately 90 Class I crimes per 1,000 population, close
to the Citys average of 93 per 1,000 population. Class I
crimes include the more serious crimes of homicide, rape,
robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny, and auto
theft. Residents of Sunnyside generally perceive the
neighborhood as having few serious crime problems, and
report that police protection and response time is adequate
and has improved from past levels.

Fire Protection
The new Fire Station #7 is located at W. 38th Avenue and
Vallejo. The station has a pumper truck and a rescue
Health Facilities
There are no public health facilities presently in the Sun-
nyside neighborhood. However, La Casa de Salute Health
Station in the Highland neighborhood has a service radius
that includes Sunnyside. This health station, funded by the
Department of Health and Hospitals, was moved from the
Quigg Newton Homes to its present location to serve a
broader area. The health station provides a full range of
low cost medical services on a sliding fee basis.
The Northwest Mental Health Center, located in the Asbury
Methodist Church at 2215 W. 30th Avenue, provides ser-
vices for all of northwest Denver,
Servicio de La Raza, at W. 38th Avenue and Mariposa
Street, is a bi-lingual social agency which provides a wide
range of services, primarily to the Chicano community: 1)
educational and recreational youth programs; 2) immigra-
tion services; 3) home visiting service (follow-through); 4)
full range of assistance to alcoholics and their families; and
5) a mental health component.
St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Shop at W. 47th and Pecos Street
offers used furniture, household goods, and clothing for
lower-income residents.
Overall, the environment of Sunnyside is pleasant, with
many well-maintained homes and businesses, attractive
parks, and well-kept lawns. However, especially in the
areas where industrial and intense or deteriorating com-
mercial uses are mixed with residential uses, environmen-
tal problems exist.
Particularly along two sides of the Quigg Newton Homes,
on W. 46th Avenue and on Lipan Street, but also along
Jason and Kalamath Streets, the industrial uses are highly
visible. Residential traffic mixes with industrial truck traffic
and parking lots, and industrial yards are unlandscaped.
Efforts should be made to provide landscaping, vegetation,
fencing, and traffic changes that would protect and insulate
the residences from these adverse conditions.
Dutch Elm disease has affected Sunnyside, with over 50
trees slated for removal within the next year. Countless
numbers of ravaged trees have been eliminated over the
last several years. The Department of Parks and Recrea-
tion, Forestry Division, identifies the diseased trees, and
property owners must pay for their removal. Special pro-
grams for partially financing the removal and replacement
of trees are available but are not widely publicized. Com-
munity Development funds or funds from private sources
might be used to replenish this loss. Some whole blocks
have few or no trees.
Drainage problems are recurrent, especially from Chaffee
Park to Remington Elementary School. While total elimina-
tion of the problem may be prohibitively expensive for the
City, given present budget constraints, some temporary
measures such as covering drainage ditches should be
There are several problems concerning noise pollution and
odors. The noise from Interstate 70 traffic is annoying to
residents, even two blocks from the freeway, especially
during peak periods. There are certain trucks that have a
kind of air brake that is especially disturbing to nearby
residents. The odors from the freeway and from the indus-
trial areas in Globeville are often concentrated in Sun-
nyside, if the wind is from the north and east.
Along the northern and eastern edges of the neighbor-
hood, some streets lack curbs or gutters. Such conditions
often lead to unsightly yards as cars pull up onto the grass.
Residential, commercial, and industrial property owners
should be informed about the costs and procedures in-
volved with Special Improvement Districts.
There are vacant parcels throughout the neighborhood
which are unsightly and unkempt. Attempts should be
made to identify the property owners so that if the property
is city-owned or held by the Denver Housing Authority or
Denver Urban Renewal Authority, the City might aid in
maintaining the parcels. Other cooperative efforts such as
community garden plots or mini-parks should also be con-
Carriage lots (parcels of land once used to accommodate
horse-drawn carriages) are one category of vacant lots
that should be given special attention. Located in the inte-
rior of at least fifteen blocks in Sunnyside, they are often
unkempt parcels filled with weeds and provide a dumping
ground for trash and junked cars. Many are without lights,
thus inviting crime. More innovative uses of such lots, as
well as lighting, should be explored.

The Sunnyside Neighborhood Plan has been prepared by the residents and the City to describe the neighborhood at this time,
both its problems and strengths; and to make recommendations in an attempt to solve the problems and build upon the
strengths. To realize plan objectives, the following recommendations are offered.
That the designated single-family and low density multi-unit areas within Sunnyside be retained and strengthened, with
emphasis on conservation and rehabilitation.
That home ownership be stimulated utilizing both private and public programs.
That the problem of obtaining conventional loans and FHA financing for homes be solved jointly by the City, local financing
institutions, real estate firms and residents of the area.
That the residential areas, especially the Quigg Newton Homes, be protected from further industrial encroachment and
buffered from present industrial uses.
That present commercial zone districts not be expanded until existing zone districts are more fully utilized.
That major through-traffic be routed around, rather than through,the neighborhood.
That a long-range study be made of arterial street needs and locations in the northwest community, diverting through-traffic
around the neighborhoods. Major aspects that should be explored include:
Present capacity and volumes on Federal Boulevard, to determine whether present capacity will be exceeded.
Desirability and feasibility of downgrading Pecos Street from an arterial to a collector.
Condition of and need for replacement or removal of viaducts serving the Central Business District.
The following recommendations are for the purpose of implementing the Plan over a five-year period and constitute a five-year
amendment to the Long Range Comprehensive Plan of the City and County of Denver.
Land Use and Zoning
Implementing Agency
or Group
Designate land uses as shown on the Neighborhood Plan Map.
Denver Planning Office
Rezone the present heavy industrial areas to light industrial to reflect present use and
discourage intense industrial development adjacent to residential areas.
Denver Planning Office
Rezone to R-1, the area bounded by Zuni Street, W. 44th Avenue, Federal Boulevard,
and W. 46th Avenue to reflect present use.
Neighborhood Planning Team
Rezone Columbus Park to 0-1 to discourage extension of the intensive commercial zone
along Pecos Street.
Denver Planning Office
Neighborhood Planning Team

Retain the single-family character of the residential area east of Lipan Street;
simultaneously encourage selective redevelopment of deteriorated structures,and new
development of vacant parcels to no greater than planned density.
Designate the following collector streets as local streets to reflect present conditions and
to encourage peripheral traffic:
W. 46th Avenue from Pecos Street to Jason Street.
W. 41st Avenue from Federal Boulevard to Osage Street.
Designate the following local streets as collector streets to encourage peripheral vehicu-
lar movements:
W. 47th Avenue from Pecos Street to Jason Street.
Jason Street from W. 47th Avenue to W. 45th Avenue.
W. 45th between Jason and Inca Streets, then Inca Streetfrom W. 45th Avenue south.
Redesignate the following streets to discourage division of the neighborhood and to
concentrate traffic on one street:
Osage Street from W. 38th Avenue to W. 44th Avenue from a one-way arterial street
to a two-way local street.
Pecos Street, from Interstate 70 to W. 38th Avenue from a one-way arterial to a two-
way arterial.
Establish permanent hike-bike routes to connect parks and public facilities in northwest
neighborhoods to a citywide bike network and to the Platte River Greenway.
Employ noise abatement measures along Interstate 70 {e.g. berms, fences, other noise
barriers) where needed, especially adjacent to Remington Elementary School.
Community Facilities
Expand the Aztlan Recreation Center site; develop adjacent park land especially land-
scaping and study the possibility of an enclosed swimming pool.
Construct a Senior Center at the corner of W. 38th Avenue and Alcott Street to serve the
entire community using Community Development Block Grant funds.
Develop the unnamed park at W. 46th Avenue and Pecos Street to include ballfields and
Denver Urban Renewal Authority
Denver Planning Office
Department of Public Works
Denver Planning Office
Denver Planning Office
Denver Planning Office
Department of Public Works
Dept, of Parks & Recreation
Interested Citizens
State Department of Highways
Denver Planning Office
Dept, of Parks and Recreation
Community Development Agency
Denver Housing Authority
Dept, of Parks and Recreation
The following are recommended for immediate implementation through public, private or joint action.
Implementing Agency
Land Use and Zoning or Group
Revise the B-4 zone district to eliminate industrial and other uses incompatible with
residential development.
Prevent further encroachment of the B-4 zone district into residential areas.
Initiate the rezoning and redevelopment of the areas designated on the Plan Map as low
and medium density residential to strengthen these declining areas.
Denver Planning Office
Zoning Administration
Denver Planning Office
Denver Planning Office


---- LOCAL


OCTOBER 20,1976
500' 1Q00

Initiate rezoning and encourage redevelopment to high density residential to serve as
buffers from more intense uses in the following areas:
Kalamath Street to Lipan Street, W. 43rd to W. 44th Avenues.
Navajo Street, from approximately W. 45th Avenue to W. 46th Avenue.
Utilize a program of spot acquisition, rehabilitation, and resale of homes to moderate
income families to strengthen housing in the following areas:
3800 and 3900 blocks of Pecos Street.
Residential area east of Lipan Street.
Residential structures in non-business areas west of Tejon Street along W. 44th Ave.
In order to bring private mortgage investment back into Sunnyside:
Make information about high risk mortgage programs for inner-city neighbor-
hoods available to local realtors, sellers of houses and potential purchasers.
Inform the Mortgage Lenders Corporation (banking consortium) and the Shared
Risk Pool (Savings and Loan consortium) that Sunnyside needs and would benefit
from high risk mortgage programs.
Encourage use of Community Development rehabilitation loans and grants to improve
housing and preserve home ownership.
Utilize Section 8 new construction program sparingly, and only in cases where new
housing would have a positive effect on the neighborhood and not further concentrate
publicly-assisted housing east of Pecos Street.
Give prime consideration to placement of an additional arterial corridor to the east of the
residential neighborhood, provided that a study determines it to be necessary to serve
northwest Denver and the CBD.
Study the feasibility of a #2 truck prohibition route along Jason and Inca Streets to lo-
cate truck traffic on the eastern edge of the neighborhood.
Study the possibility of #3 truck prohibition routes to keep heavy through-truck
traffic at a minimum on neighborhood residential streets: Lipan Street, Tejon Street, W.
44th Avenue.
Request a Colorado Department of Highways noise impact analysis along Interstate 70
for both present and future volumes.
Enforce the existing city noise ordinances and truck prohibitions adjacent to major
residential areas.
Initiate a study of existing bus service ana encourage east-west and north-south cir-
culator buses in northwest Denver to connect major educational, cultural, recreational,
and shopping areas.
Request a traffic engineering study of the following:
Feasibility of left turn signals off Federal Boulevard at W. 38th and W. 44th Avenue.
Denver Planning Office
Denver Urban Renewal Authority
Neighborhood Planning Team
Neighborhood Planning Team
Denver Planning Office
Neighborhood Planning Team
Denver Urban Renewal Authority
District 9 Community Development
Denver Planning Office
Neighborhood Planning Team
Denver Housing Authority
Denver Planning Office
Denver Planning Office
Department of Public Works
Denver Planning Office
Denver Planning Office
Department of Public Works
State Department of Highways
Denver Planning Office
Department of Health & Hospitals
Police Department
Neighborhood Planning Team
Regional Transportation District (RTD)
Denver Planning Office
Department of Public Works

Pedestrian crossing signal placement and adequacy on Pecos Street, between W.
40th and W. 43rd Avenues, and need for moving of the signals or constructing
an overpass to better protect school children.
Need for pedestrian overpass at W. 41 st Avenue and Federal Boulevard near Colum-
bian Elementary School.
Need for a pedestrian crossing at W. 46th Avenue and Lipan Street.
Need for signs at Pecos and W.46thNo Right Turn when Children are Present?
Install a pedestrian crossing signal light on W. 38th Avenue, between Alcott and Bryant
Streets to protect senior citizen residents of senior housing at W. 38th Avenue and Alcott.
Provide curb ramps for the handicapped adjacent to senior housing project at W. 38th
Avenue and Alcott and the Quigg Newton Senior and Adult Center, and study the need
for other curb ramps in the neighborhood.
Study the feasibility of vacating a portion of Navajo Street between W. 44th Avenue and
W. 46th Avenue to allow better access between the Aztlan Recreation Center and Quigg
Newton Senior Center.
Reclassify the following collector streets to local streets and perform the traffic control
changes that reflect this classification:
Tejon Street, from W. 46th Avenue to Interstate 70 service road.
Interstate 70 service road from Elm Court to Tejon Street (incuding the W. 47th Ave.
and-Elm Court collectors).
W. 46th Avenue, from Pecos Street to Lipan Street.
Lipan Street, from W. 38th Avenue to W. 46th Avenue.
Reclassify W. 47th Avenue from Pecos Street east, to a collector street and perform the
traffic control changes that reflect this classification.
Community Facilities
Maintain a high level of public services (e.g. trash disposal, snow removal, street
maintenance and cleaning).
Study the need for day care facilities in Sunnyside.
Study long-range solutions to drainage problems, especially along Tejon Street, W. 38th
Avenue, Pecos Street, and W. 46th Avenue, and provide short-range solutions.
Rename Columbus Park to La Raza Park (residents already call the park by this name).
Paint and post preliminary bike routes on streets designated on the Plan Map.
Install additional trash containers in parks, especially Chaffee Park.
Expand or initiate community use of enclosed swimming pools at North High School and
Skinner Junior High.
Neighborhood Planning Team
Department of Public Works
Department of Public Works
Commission on the Aging
Denver Plannning Office
Denver Housing Authority
Denver Planning Office
Dept, of Parks and Recreation
Department of Public Works
Department of Public Works
Department of Public Works
Denver Public Schools
Department of Public Works
Department of Social Services
Denver Planning Office
Department of Public Works
Urban Drainage District
Neighborhood Planning Team
Dept, of Parks and Recreation
Department of Public Works
Dept, of Parks and Recreation
City/School Coordinating

Include plans for neighborhood use of Columbian Elementary playground facilities in
future site development.
Expand the bookmobile service from the Woodbury Library, especially during evenings
and weekends.
Resurface and repair the tennis courts at Horace Mann Junior High to encourage more
community use.
Historic Preservation
Request that Sunnyside be resurveyed with designation of historic structures, where
Initiate a street tree planting program to replenish the trees lost to Dutch Elm diseas^and
publicize special programs for financing removal and replacement of trees.
Develop a program and seek funding for innovative use, maintenance and lighting of
problem carriage lots and other vacant lots.
Buffer the Quigg Newton Homes from adverse traffic, noise, and unsightly views of the
industrial areas, e.g. landscaping, redesign of streets, etc.
Contact commercial and industrial property owners to encourage landscaping of parking
lots and building fronts.
Inform residents of procedures and costs involved with Special Improvement Districts
to construct or replace sidewalks, alleys, curbs and gutters, where needed.
Install mid-block street lighting on W. 39th Avenue, between Pecos and Quivas Streets,
and in other areas, as needed, as a crime deterrent.
Establish a method of publicizing available jobs, commercial establishments and public
facilities and services.
Encourage the formation of an ongoing citizen action and neighborhood improvement
group to implement the Plan and to establish a liaison with appropriate agencies.
Encourage formation of a group of residents and business owners to rejuvenate de-
teriorating or declining business.
City/School Coordinating
Denver Public Library
City/School Coordinating
Landmark Preservation
Denver Planning Office
District 9 Community Develop-
ment (CD) Committee
Neighborhood Planning Team
Parks and Recreation
Residents, Parks and Recreation
Denver Planning Office
District 9 CD Committee
Residents of Quigg Newton Homes
Industrial Owners and Operators
Neighborhood Planning Team
Department of Public Works
Denver Planning Office
Department of Public Works
Police Department
Neighborhood Planning Team
Department of Social Services
State Employment Division
Sunnyside, Highland and Jefferson
Park Planning Team Members
Commission on Community Relations
Denver Planning Office
Denver Planning Office
Neighborhood Planning Team
Local Businessmen

Honorable William H. McNichols, Jr.
Edward F. Burke, President
Elvin R. Caldwell
Salvadore Sal' Carpio
Cathy Donohue
Stephen P. Grogan
Paul A. Hentzell
Kenneth M. Macintosh
James J. Nolan
Larry J. Perry
Cathy Reynolds
William R. Roberts
M. L. Sam Sandos
L. Don Wyman
George Cavender, Chairman
Harold V. Cook
Stephen P. Grogan
McKinley Harris
Marjorie Hornbein
Philip Miistein
Marie K. Rock
Wilson B. Roup
Tanya Wood
Alan L. Canter, Director of Planning
Robert A. Damerau, Assistant Director of Planning
A. Gordon Appell, Planning Coordinator
Janice Finch, Neighborhood Planner and Report Author
Billie Bramhall, Chief, Small Area Planning Division
Jerry Andolsek, Head, Neighborhood Planning Section
Ken Barkema, Report Graphics
Karl Haberman, Report Graphics
Diane Smucny, Report Graphics
Ruth Ann LaGuardia, Typist
Theresa Duran, Chairperson
Patricia Bendelow
Shirley Fante
Mary Fresquez
Richard Greene
Hal Gross
Philip Hendren
Gertrude Mangone
Johnny W. Peltz
Floyd Pinney
Leonard Polak
Ed Prado
Frank Quintana
Francisco Rivera
Linda Sandoval
Ruth Shepherd
Jeannette Swanson
Maria Torrez
Beatrice Villanueva
Fred Fox, Community Design Center
Joe Grindon, Regional Transportation District
Bob Vialpando, Commission on Community Relations
OCTOBER 20,1976
DPO 14 (4/77)

The preparation of this report was financed in part through a
grant from the Department of Housing and Urban Development
under contract no. CPA-CO-0800-0144.