Monday, January 26, 2015

Neighborhood Spotlight: West Colfax

Nowadays the streets of West Colfax are filled with shopping centers, healthcare facilities and commercial offices that blend with residences in this Hispanic and Asian multi-ethnic neighborhood. However, more than 100 years ago, West Colfax developed as the residential and commercial home of Denver’s original Jewish population.

Colfax long served as a route for travel and trade through Denver. Westward travelers used the Golden Road as a way to the mountains, meeting wagons of hay and other agricultural goods destined for Denver. With the turn of the century, West Colfax and other Westside neighborhoods were fast becoming the heart of a vibrant, working-class community. With immigrants from the eastern United States, as well as more recent arrivals from central and eastern Europe, the neighborhood of modest homes and small businesses was a distinctly Jewish community.

Today, West Colfax is identified by the Piton Foundation as one of the city’s at-risk neighborhoods, with residents who are younger, poorer, and less educated than those who reside in almost any other Denver neighborhood. But, as a recent study suggests, West Colfax is also a neighborhood of diverse households -- poor, rich, and the degrees between -- who have decided to make it home, and one local publication recently designated it as a up-and-coming city neighborhood. Light rail construction, redevelopment of St. Anthony Central Hospital, a new library decades after the closure of the beloved Dickinson branch, and the neighborhood’s proximity to downtown jobs and amenities offer the prospect of renaissance.

This history of West Colfax provided by Dr. Jeanne Abrams, Director of the Peryle H. and Ira M. Beck Memorial Archives Beck Archives, through the Denver Public Library.  Read the full article here.

To learn more about the West Colfax Association of Neighbors (WeCAN) and their participation in the Sustainable Neighborhoods Program, click here.

For more information, check out our website -

Friday, January 23, 2015

Large Item Pickup

Large Item Pickup

Denver residents that have trash service provided by the City & County of Denver/Solid Waste Management may have large items (such as furniture and mattresses) picked up on a six-week rotation schedule. This is referred to as Large Item Pickup (LIP) collection service.  LIP collection service is based on the type of trash collection provided by Solid Waste Management.

Follow these general guidelines when setting out LIP items:

  • 7 AM - LIP items should be set out by 7 AM according to Your Pickup Schedule on type of trash service.
  • 4 feet away - LIP items should be placed 4 feet away from the trash cans, dumpsters or other obstructions (recycling carts, cars, poles, mailboxes, etc).
  • 5 items - A maximum of five large items (furniture, etc.) will be collected per LIP cycle (every nine weeks) per household.  
  • If you would prefer to see your large items reused or recycled, visit the Recycling Directory for drop site locations for things like mattresses, furniture and yard debris.

Regular day of service during assigned LIP week.
Regular day of service during assigned LIP week.
Monday during assigned LIP week.  The LIP items will be collected sometime during the week.  The LIP truck will go through the alley once during the scheduled LIP week.

Materials NOT accepted with trash collection

Do not place these items in your trash or set out for Large Item Pickup:
  • Construction and building materials
  • Wood boards or drywall sheets
  • Automotive fluids, parts or materials
  • Car tires or batteries
  • Electronics (televisions, computers)
  • Commercial, industrial or medical waste
  • Hazardous waste or chemicals
Visit the Recycling Directory to find collection alternatives for these materials.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Neighborhood Spotlight: Elyria

Credit: Nathan Heffel / KUNC
You’ve most likely driven through the Globeville/Elyria-Swansea neighborhoods, or more precisely, you’ve driven over them. Sitting at the junction of Interstates 70 and 25, the community of roughly 3,000 has been dissected by several elevated portions of interstate. For lifelong residents like Liliana Flores Amaro and her extended family, the gigantic gray slabs of concrete are a physical reminder of what the area has endured. “You know, it’s really funny,” muses Flores Amaro. “There’s sort of a contradiction where people in different areas of the city might not even know that we’re in Denver, right?.”

  • Brick homes built in the 20's sit between factories and rail yards.
  • With the revitalization, there’s a fear of gentrification in the neighborhood. Other renovation projects in Denver, such as the Northside and Highland neighborhoods have pushed a once largely immigrant population away as home prices have soared. “People want to be able to have amenities and services that any other neighborhood has in Denver, and still be able to afford to live there,” Flores Amaro said.
    The Yards at the National Western Stock Show.
    The Yards at the National Western Stock Show
    Credit: National Western Stock Show
    One of the most recognizable parts of the Elyria neighborhood, particularly during the month of January in Denver, is The National Western Stock Show, an integral part of the neighborhood since the early 1900’s
    To read the full article, click here.

    For more information, check out our website - 

    Friday, January 16, 2015

    ECM Board Member, Judson Robertson

    Board Member, Judson Robertson 

    I became involved in Extreme Community Makeover because I witnessed true impact on my first day of serving. The idea of coming alongside neighbors and serving with them, instead of for them, helped bring the community together. It encourages neighbors to talk to one another and they may have never interacted before. This brings about community and truly improves the lives of the people living there. Also, ECM can be replicated in any city across the world and have direct impact on the community it serves because we are not in for one day and out. We stay for years and help the area transform. That is why I became involved.

    ECM helps bring communities together and gets residents talking. The shovel and paint brush are tools to bring communities closer by working alongside one another. Our goal is to have neighbor helping neighbor and hope we can be the catalyst to bring about this conversation. Other organizations come in for a day and leave, but we are there for years at a time. This develops trust and consistency in areas where that is uncommon. Over the years, the communities change for the better because neighbors know each other and are committed to the change.

    Wednesday, January 14, 2015

    January Extreme Endeavors: Is Your Goal to Volunteer This Year?

    Extreme Community Makeover
    Extreme Community Makeover Newsletter 
    January Extreme Endeavors
    January 2015
    In This Issue
    Looking for a Place to Store Our Tools
    Save the Dates: Feb 4, 22, & 28
    Foundation Partner: The Denver Foundation
    Church Partner: Restoration Community Church
    December Volunteers
    Quick Links
    Facebook  Twitter  Blog 
    You Tube  Send Out Cards
     Help ECM build stronger communities in Denver through your financial support.
    Checks can be made to:
    Extreme Community Makeover
     and sent to:   
    Extreme Community Makeover
    PO Box 102586
    Denver, CO 80250-2586

    With a new year upon us, a number of possibilities exist.  Whether or not you make resolutions at the start of the year, you are probably anticipating what the year holds in some way.  I know we are excited to see what the year holds for Extreme Community Makeover at least!  If one of your goals is to volunteer or get more involved in your local community, it would be great to talk with you about how you can do just that through ECM this year.
    Angela Bomgaars, Executive Director 
    Volunteer Snapshots
    Working together
    2015 ECM Work Day Dates
    Here are the dates for Saturday Work Days in 2015:
    April 11April 25May 2May 16
    May 30June 13June 27July 11
    July 25August 8August 22September 12
    September 26October 3October 17October 31
    Looking for a Place to Store Our Tools
    ECM has a number of tools such as brooms, rakes, shovels, a lawn mower, and a variety of other things and we are looking for a storage place where we can keep them, preferably in an easily accessible location to the neighborhoods where we work.  If you have any ideas or leads, please contact Angela to share your thoughts.  We would like to figure this out in the next month or two so that we have time to move all the tools to their new home in anticipation of projects starting up again in the spring.
    Save the Dates: Feb 4, 22, & 28
    More details will be available next month but there are a couple events coming up in February we would like to invite you to attend.
    Wednesday February 4 at 5:30 pm: This event will be the first of three volunteer happy hours to take place this year.  The goal is for you to connect with other people around Denver who are also interested in volunteering, while learning more about the ways to volunteer through ECM.  The location will be determined soon, so check our website for those details.
    Sunday February 22 at 5:00 pm: Cheer on the Colorado Avalanche at a game vs the Tampa Bay Lightning.  Tickets will be available on our website soon with $27 tickets in the upper level and $57 tickets in the lower level.  $5 of each ticket sold will be donated to ECM.
    Saturday February 28 at 10:00 am: This ECM Work Day will look a little different than our typical yard work and painting projects.  Instead, volunteers will be following up with residents ECM assisted in 2014 to gain their feedback about the project help they received, along with asking for input about their neighborhood through one-on-one conversations.  
    Foundation Partner: The Denver Foundation 
    Denver Foundation The Denver Foundation is a community foundation that inspires people and mobilizes resources to improve life in Metro Denver.  In 2013, the Foundation and its donors awarded more than $47 million in grants.  ECM is extremely appreciative to be one of the recent recipients of an economic opportunity grant and eagerly anticipate partnering with The Denver Foundation to improve the quality of life for many Denver residents. 
    Church Partner: Restoration Community Church
    Restoration CC Restoration Community Church is a group of people simply trying to follow Jesus.  From the beginning, they designed their services as a safe place for people to explore faith and grow in their relationship with God, regardless of where they are in their spiritual journey.  At Restoration you can be yourself, build life changing friendships, and make a difference in the world both locally and globally.  One of the ways Restoration is doing just that is through their partnership with ECM.  Thanks for your support both financially and with your time!
    December Volunteers
    Thank you to Front Range Christian School for volunteering in December!
    Thank you for partnering with ECM to make a difference in Denver neighborhoods!
    ECM Tagline
    Extreme Community Makeover

    Monday, January 12, 2015

    Neighborhood Spotlight: La Alma/Lincoln Park

    Chosen by the American Planning Association as one of the nation’s great American neighborhoods in 2014, La Alma/Lincoln Park is also one of Denver’s oldest neighborhoods.  ECM has been working in this neighborhood since 2009, working with hundreds of residents to complete projects, along with hosting our annual "Art is in the Air" event at an art gallery in the Art District on Santa Fe, located in the heart of this neighborhood.

    URBAN   La Alma-Lincoln Park is a vibrant, mixed-use, urban community with parks, major health services, an arts district and cultural facilities, a major grocery store, and proximity to downtown and multiple institutes for higher education, arts, and culture.

    TRANSIT-ORIENTED  It is well-served by a variety of transportation options, including good light rail and bus service, bike routes and B-Cycle stations, and a rotating inventory of car2go vehicles. With all of the options in place, residents here can feel free to walk, too.

    CULTURED  It is a diverse neighborhood that maintains its Latino cultural identity, is home to the Santa Fe Arts District and Colorado Ballet, and provides easy access to Denver’s theater district, museum district, and major sports and concert venues.
    HISTORIC It is also one of Denver’s oldest neighborhoods; 93% of its residential blocks were half or more developed before 1900 and the remaining 7% developed between 1900 and 1914. Seven locations are on the National Register of Historic Places, four are Denver Historic Landmarks, and 20 qualify for historic preservation under Chapter 30 of the Denver Revised Code.

    COMMUNITY  The neighborhood provides homes, jobs, and services for a wide variety of ages, lifestyles, economic circumstances, ethnic groups, and family types. Most housing is affordable at a variety of levels ranging from subsidized housing to middle-level market rate. There is a mix of small-lot single-family units, duplexes, row houses, and low-, mid-, and high-rise apartment buildings. The neighborhood is currently growing and enjoying both public and private economic reinvestment.

    For more information, check out our website -