Calhoun: Wake-Up Call

Commerce City voted down a name change: Will Victory Crossing be victorious?

A campaign to change the name of Commerce City fell flat back in 2007.

Will the current back-to-the-future attempt to rebrand the town's 917-acre Prairie Gateway -- home of the Commerce City Civic Center as well as Dick's Sporting Goods Park -- as Victory Crossing even the score?

The new proposal, of course, is inspired by the Colorado Rapids, the soccer team that recently won the MLS Cup championship and is based in Commerce City -- at Dick's Sporting Goods Park, whose name is an awkward moutful. Although that facility's name would remain, with any luck it would be subsumed by Victory Crossing.

But Commerce City may need some luck to convince residents to buy in. In April 2007, they turned down a ballot measure that would have renamed the town. Before the vote, outgoing (very) mayor Sean Ford said this: "If you have an ugly girlfriend and she changes her name, she is still ugly." Not that Commerce City was a town without pretty, he hastened to point out. But the ugly truth was that all those johnny-come-latelies to the town northeast of Denver wanted to gussy it up with a superficial name that gave no hint of the town's deep, commerce-filled roots.

Among the replacement names suggested at the time: (thank you, PETA) and Highlandfills Ranch.


More from our Calhoun: Wake-Up Call archive: "John Hickenlooper: Denver mayor turned governor-elect no longer name-checked at DIA."

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Patricia Calhoun co-founded Westword in 1977; she’s been the editor ever since. She’s a regular on the weekly CPT12 roundtable Colorado Inside Out, played a real journalist in John Sayles’s Silver City, once interviewed President Bill Clinton while wearing flip-flops, and has been honored with numerous national awards for her columns and feature-writing.
Contact: Patricia Calhoun