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Meet Us On Alameda -- Parade of Homes

From Red Rocks to the big white balls of Buckley Air Force Base, Alameda Avenue runs through Lakewood, Denver and Aurora, collecting a series of religious, cultural and ethnic hubs along the way.

Westword drove Alameda from one end to another for the fifth in our occasional profiles of metro Denver roads. Our feature story can be found on our home page. (Our previous journeys took on Broadway, Colfax, Federal and Sheridan.) The following is a Web-only extra.

At least four more Internet installments over the next week will have you going our way.

The 2008 Parade of Homes in the Solterra housing development near West Alameda Parkway and South Indiana Street in Lakewood was one of our stops. Once part of the Rooney Ranch, there won't be much open space left after the planned 1,440 homes are built.

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Eight of the biggest -- and most expensive -- will go on display Saturday, July 26, when the Parade of Homes goes on display.

As Westword reporter Alan Prendergast explained in our feature story this week, the homes "are opulent expressions of the 'European hilltown' style of architecture that's supposed to be the prevalent theme of the community: a mishmash of Tuscan villa, French Provençal and Andalusian delusion. They range in price from $1.95 million to $2.5 million — which, though a bit steep for your average cowboy, is actually a bit more "affordable" than some previous Parade monstrosities...Solterra's showcase mansions are both cavernous and airy, with eye-bugging views of the Front Range, the obligatory stadium-sized master suites, arena-sized closets and granite-islanded kitchens, and enough bathrooms, wine cellars, billiard rooms and home theaters to keep the entire Mormon Tabernacle Choir in thrall (assuming the choristers shoot pool and sneak a drink now and then)."

On September 2, Brookline Homes will auction off one of the homes -- a four-bedroom, seven-bath mansion valued at $2.6 million -- and send a portion of the proceeds to Plant-It 2020, a reforestation foundation created by singer John Denver.

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