Lakewood, Colorado

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City of Lakewood, Colorado
Home Rule Municipality
Location in Jefferson County and the State of Colorado
Location in Jefferson County and the State of Colorado
Location of Colorado in the United States
Location of Colorado in the United States
Coordinates: 39°42′23″N 105°6′10″W / 39.70639°N 105.10278°W / 39.70639; -105.10278Coordinates: 39°42′23″N 105°6′10″W / 39.70639°N 105.10278°W / 39.70639; -105.10278
Country United States
State Colorado
County Jefferson County[1]
Founded 1889
Incorporated 1969[2]
 • Type Home Rule Municipality[1]
 • Mayor Bob Murphy
 • Total 42.5 sq mi (110.0 km2)
 • Land 41.6 sq mi (107.7 km2)
 • Water 0.9 sq mi (2.3 km2)
Elevation[3] 5,480 ft (1,682 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 142,980 (US: 172nd)
 • Density 3,465.3/sq mi (1,338.0/km2)
Time zone MST (UTC-7)
 • Summer (DST) MDT (UTC-6)
ZIP codes Denver 80214-80215, 80226-80228, 80232, 80235-80236
Golden 80401
Littleton 80123
Area code(s) Both 303 and 720
FIPS code 08-43000
GNIS feature ID 0181620
Highways I-70, US 6, US 40, US 285, SH 8, SH 95, SH 121, SH 391, SH 470
Website City of Lakewood
Fifth most populous Colorado city

The City of Lakewood is a Home Rule Municipality which is the most populous municipality in Jefferson County, Colorado, United States. Lakewood is the fifth most populous city in the State of Colorado and the 172nd most populous city in the United States. The city population was 142,980 at the 2010 United States Census.[4] Lakewood is west of Denver and is part of the Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, CO Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Before incorporation in 1969, Lakewood was a community with policing provided by the Jefferson County Sheriff, several fire districts, and some neighborhoods without street lights and sidewalks. The City of Lakewood was incorporated in 1969 as Jefferson City. Soon after, an election was held and the city's name was changed to Lakewood. This was due to an overwhelming dislike of "Jefferson City" and the perceived notion it would be confused with existing communities in Colorado and Missouri.[5] At the time of incorporation the city population was already over 90,000.

The urban/suburban development of the community known as Lakewood was begun in 1889 by Charles Welch and W.A.H. Loveland, who platted a 13-block area along Colfax Avenue west of Denver in eastern Jefferson County. Loveland, the former president of the Colorado Central Railroad, retired to the new community of Lakewood after many years of living in Golden.

Lakewood also houses Lakewood High School, an International Baccalaureate school in Jefferson County. Lakewood is also home to Colorado Christian University.

In 2011, Lakewood was named an All-America City for the first time.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1970 92,787
1980 113,808 22.7%
1990 126,481 11.1%
2000 144,126 14.0%
2010 142,980 −0.8%
Est. 2013 147,214 3.0%
U.S. Decennial Census
2011 estimate

As of 2000, there were 144,126 people; 60,531 households; and 36,500 families residing in the city. The population density was 3,465.3 people per square mile (1,338.0/km²). There were 62,422 housing units at an average density of 1,500.8/sq.mi. (579.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 87.15% White, 1.48% African American, 1.11% Native American, 2.72% Asian, 0.08% Pacific Islander, 4.88% from other races, and 2.58% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 14.54% of the population.

There were 60,531 households, out of which 27.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.1% were married couples living together, 10.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 39.7% were non-families. 30.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.32 and the average family size was 2.92.

In the city the population was spread out with 22.2% under the age of 18, 9.6% from 18 to 24, 32.4% from 25 to 44, 23.6% from 45 to 64, and 12.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 97.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.5 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $48,109, and the median income for a family was $57,171. Males had a median income of $39,800 versus $31,128 for females. The per capita income for the city was $25,575. About 4.8% of families and 7.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 9.5% of those under age 18 and 4.7% of those age 65 or over.[4]

Geography and climate[edit]

Lakewood is located at 39°42′23″N 105°6′10″W / 39.70639°N 105.10278°W / 39.70639; -105.10278.[6]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 42.5 sq mi (110.0 km2), of which 41.6 sq mi (107.7 km2), is land and 0.89 sq mi (2.3 km2) (2.05%) is water.

Lakewood experiences a semi-arid climate (Köppen BSk) featuring mild and snowy winters and warm to hot summers, with great temperature differences (about 30 degrees Fahrenheit) between day and night. Precipitation is concentrated in the spring and summer months.

Climate data for Lakewood, Colorado
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 72
Average high °F (°C) 43.6
Average low °F (°C) 12.7
Record low °F (°C) −26
Precipitation inches (mm) 0.48
Snowfall inches (cm) 8.6
Source: [7]

Municipal government[edit]

The Lakewood Civic Center

Until 1969, the area known as Lakewood had no municipal government, relying instead on several water districts, several fire districts, and the government of Jefferson County. However, the community had already existed for about 80 years.

Lakewood maintains a council/manager form of government. Citizens elect a City Council consisting of the Mayor, who is elected at-large, and 10 City Council members, two from each of the city's five geographical wards. The mayor and the council members assert the policies for the operation of the city government.

As of 2011, the Mayor is Bob Murphy. The Council members representing the first ward are Vicki Stack and Karen Kellen, Scott Koop and Cindy Baroway represent the second ward, Sue King and Ed Peterson represent the third ward, David Wiechman and Adam Paul represent the fourth ward, and the fifth ward is represented by Diana Allen and Tom Quinn.

State representation[edit]

Almost the entirety of the City of Lakewood falls into Colorado House District 26. Lakewood is represented in the state House by Rep. Andy Kerr.[8]

Sister cities[edit]

Lakewood has four sister cities, as designated by Sister Cities International:


Lakewood's economy is diverse while the largest employers are government. Companies based in Lakewood include Einstein Bros. Bagels, 1stBank and The Integer Group.

Top employers[edit]

According to the City's 2011 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the top employers in the city are:[10]

# Employer # of Employees
1 Denver Federal Center 8,000
2 Jefferson County Public Schools 2,734
3 Terumo 1,624
4 St. Anthony Hospital 1,600
5 City of Lakewood 893
6 HomeAdvisor 884
7 1stBank 723
8 The Integer Group 629
9 Red Rocks Community College 400
10 West Metro Fire Protection District 393

Culture and contemporary life[edit]

Lakewood never had a traditional downtown area. West Colfax Avenue served the metropolitan area as U.S. Route 40 and the main route joining Denver with the Rocky Mountains. As such, Colfax from Harlan west to Kipling and beyond had mostly commercial establishment. In addition to the Jewish Consumptive Relief Society (JCRS) for TB patients and the small frame Methodist Church, there emerged by the 1950s grocery and drug stores, gas stations, restaurants & taverns, several motels, a movie theater, roller rink and bowling alley, and used car lots. Several multi-business "shopping centers" developed followed by much larger centers at JCRS and Westland. The Villa Italia Mall on Alameda Boulevard, twenty blocks south of Colfax, reflected the southward expansion of Lakewood settlement and housed a larger concentration of retail space. As the mall went into decline, the Lakewood City Council developed a plan to demolish the Villa Italia Mall and replace it with a new development called Belmar.


In addition to the Belmar retail district, Lakewood has a shopping mall called Colorado Mills which is near I-70 and Colfax Avenue.


Landmarks and historical points of interest include:[citation needed]

  • The old Lakewood school complex (now housing the Jefferson County Open School) at Wadsworth Blvd and 10th Avenue. The old building facing Wadsworth was the Lakewood Grade School dating from the 1920s.
  • Harley-Davidson dealership on Colfax Ave. is housed in what was originally the Lakewood movie theater dating from the early 1950s.
  • The old Villa Italia Mall has been replaced by Belmar, a new town center with a mix of retail, residential, cultural, and public space. The Laboratory of Art and Ideas at Belmar was located in Belmar until May 2009, and that location is now occupied by the Colorado Campus of The Ohio Center for Broadcasting, a private trade school for the radio and television industry. Belmar has a designated Arts District that houses a number of artist studios and several gallery spaces. Also located in the Arts District is Working with Artists, a nonprofit fine art photography school.
  • Lakewood Heritage Center is a museum with several historic buildings and is located near Kountze Lake, which formerly housed the Belmar Mansion.

See also[edit]


External links[edit]