Denver's northeast neighborhoods have a new plan for development and growth for the next twenty years.
On Monday, June 10, Denver City Council unanimously adopted the Far Northeast Area Plan, which will serve as overarching guidelines for growth for Montbello, Gateway-Green Valley Ranch, and the southern portion of the Denver International Airport neighborhood.
A culmination of two years of work, the plan aims to preserve the character of the neighborhoods and manage, through partnerships between the city, private groups and nonprofits, the high rate of growth expected in the next two decades. As part of the plan, the Montbello neighborhood will break ground on a grocery store in the coming months, and a busy strip of Peoria Street in Montbello will become friendlier for pedestrians.
A twenty-person steering committee led the effort, holding five public meetings that brought together about 550 attendees. Denver Community Planning and Development also went to over fifty community events as part of the planning process.
The northeast encompasses seventeen square miles of land and is a relatively new part of the city; Montbello, the oldest of the neighborhoods, became a part of Denver in the 1960s. The area includes large Latino and African-American populations.
The neighborhood guidelines will complement Comprehensive Plan 2040, Denver's overarching strategy for the next twenty years that city council adopted in April. At the council meeting yesterday, members Chris Herndon and Stacie Gilmore praised the Far Northeast Area document.
"We are finally here," said Herndon, who represents District 8, which encompasses part of the northeast.
Residents of the region mostly expressed support for the plan at the meeting and spoke of how engaged they were in creating it. "This process really exemplifies what it means to have community-informed and community-led initiatives at the neighborhood level," said Donna Garnett, executive director of the Montbello Organizing Committee, at the meeting. For years, Garnett's committee has been pushing for a grocery store in Montbello, which currently doesn't have a full-service option.
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.