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Top 10 Neighborhood Amenities in Stapleton, Colorado

For more than 65 years, Stapleton served Denver as its international airport. In 1995, the airport was decommissioned and redeveloped into a new urban neighborhood. Although, at over 4700 acres, Stapleton is a giant neighborhood with housing at virtually every price point, as well as commercial and industrial developments. It's not surprising that Stapleton has been an overwhelming success. In many ways, Stapleton offers the best of all worlds. Every home is a new build, so they offer modern amenities and efficiencies. At the same time, the architecture borrows heavily from surrounding, older neighbors, in particular, Park Hill. So, many of the homes have front porches, with their garages accessible from back alleys. Multiple developers built homes on every block so as to avoid the cookie cutter look of many suburban developments. Wide sidewalks crisscross almost every street, making the area perfect for walking and saying, "hello," to neighbors. Two large retail developments, Northfield and Quebec Square, bring almost every suburban retailer into the city. Smaller retail strips evoke the neighborhood shopettes that are popular in surrounding neighborhoods, with coffee shops, wine and liquor, and mom & pop restaurants and shops. Of course, as a true city development, one of Stapleton's best features is it's easy access to most of the city. Downtown is ten minutes away, and popular destinations like DIA, Park Meadows, Boulder, and Colorado Mills are all less than a half hour away. And, soon a new rail line will connect Stapleton to downtown and DIA.

Stapleton Control Tower/Punch Bowl

The Stapleton control tower has been an icon since the area was Denver's original international airport. Without a definite plan in mind the control tower sat empty for more than 10 years. Recently, a new plan is being approved that will convert the control tower into a neighborhood casual restaurant and bowling alley. The popular Punch Bowl Bowling Alley is taking over operation of the building and surrounding lots. They'll add a new ground floor building to accommodate the bowling and a deck that will have a view of Central Park. Altogether, the building will have over 25,000 square feet. The restaurant and bowling alley should be ready to open in early 2016.

Central Park

Central Park is the heart of Stapleton's elaborate public park system. Since many the homes have small yards, the modern design of Stapleton allows for everyone to enjoy nearby open green space. Throughout each of the individual neighborhoods, there are parkways, green belts, and pocket parks. But Central Park is in a class by itself. At over 80 acres, Central Park is one of Denver's largest parks. With that much space, there is always something for everyone. There are picnic areas, benches, a playground, sledding hills, hiking and biking trails, and a lake. Central Park is a great place to enjoy Colorado's 300 days of annual sunshine.

Central Park Rec Center

At the far eastern edge of Central Park is the Central Park Rec Center. One of Denver's most modern public recreation centers, this facility rivals virtually any private health club. The 57,000 square foot building has something for virtually any health enthusiast. There are classes in yoga, core fitness, and Barre Fit. There're camps for children and the Silver Sneakers program. The indoor swimming pools are extremely popular, with a dedicated lap pool, lazy river, a leisure pool. The pools have Coast Guard style life preservers for the small children and an amazing view of the Rocky Mountains. Upstairs, you'll find a room full of the latest cardio equipment. Of course, as a city-owned facility, the price for membership or one time usage is very affordable.

Stanley Marketplace

The Stanley Marketplace is in the process of creating a new and dynamic retail center unlike anything else in the city. The old Stanley Aviation building, on the south east corner of Stapleton, at one time, housed a company that built ejector seats for planes. The large building sat empty for many years. But it's now being rebuilt to become a new, modern market along the lines of the Pike Market in Seattle. When the 100,000 square foot building is completed, it will be home to restaurants, a fitness center and yoga studio, a beer garden, numerous retail options, shared office space, and a live indoor/outdoor performance plaza for all kinds of events. Completion is anticipated for early 2016.

Bladium Sports Center

The Bladium Sports Center was one of the first facilities open after Stapleton's conversion to a residential neighborhood. As a matter fact this building used to be an airplane hangar. It has two indoor soccer fields, a spin studio, cardio and weight rooms, a small sports bar, and large locker rooms for both men and women. The Bladium features exercise programs that include personal training, group programs, and their cross-fit training program. This is a sister facility to the original Bladium near San Francisco. Across the street, a commercial building has a local pizza place, Mici. So, you can grab a bite after the game.

East 29th Town Center

The 29th St. Town Center is a walkable neighborhood shopette that is reminiscent of small neighborhood shopping centers in older neighborhoods. While the neighboring King Soopers is far larger than anything you'd normally find a neighborhood shopping center, the 29th St. shops are much smaller retailers and restaurants. On 29th Street, the find a Casey's Irish style pub, Starbucks, and Einstein's bagel, Chipotle, Noodles, and Anthony's pizza. A little farther up the block is the Founders Green park. This two-acre park hosts weekly farmers markets, outdoor movies, and the Stapleton beer Festival. There are more than 50 events every year at this popular park. Of course having ice cream and pizza across the street doesn't hurt. Around the corner is a brand new public library.

Aviator Pool

The Aviator Swimming Pool and Park are just one of the many public swimming pools available to Stapleton residents. All of the pools open during the warm summer months (Memorial Day to Labor Day) and provide ample opportunity for both kids and adults to enjoy a quick swim or a regimented exercise program. The Aviator Pool is home to the local swim team, the Stingrays. Pools in the area include the Puddle Jumper, the Maverick, Runway 35, the Jet Stream, and the F-15. All the pools offer reduced admission for Stapleton residents.

Quebec Plaza

The Québec Plaza is a traditional big-box retail center. Serving both Stapleton and the surrounding neighborhoods, the Québec Plaza includes monster retailers Walmart, the Home Depot, and Sam's Club. In addition to the big retailers, you'll find a wide variety of national retailers represented, like Petsmart, Big 5 Sports, and Office Depot. There are also many restaurants including Panera Bread, Famous Dave's Barbecue, Smash Burger, Country Buffet, and Buffalo Wild Wings. If that's not enough, you can also find auto repair, several banks, and a large Goodwill. Not far away, an RTD commuter rail station, with direct access to Denver International Airport, will open in early 2016. A half a dozen large hotels are within walking distance.

Northfield Shopping Center

Northfield Stapleton is a unique, outdoor shopping center that combines large retailers like JCPenney, Macy's, and SuperTarget, with a Main Street shopping experience. Northfiel’s Main Street is a nice combination of boutique shopping and a wide variety of restaurants, including Richard Sandoval’s La Sandia Tequila Cantina and Texas de Brazil. One of the most popular features of Northfield is Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World. The store offers virtually everything for camping, hunting, and fishing. It even features its own island-themed restaurant, Islamorada. Northfield currently features over 65 shops, restaurants and entertainment venues (including a Harkins 18 theatres and Improv Comedy Club and Dinner Theatre) with more shops and restaurants being announced regularly.

Denver School of Science and Technology

Denver School of Science and Technology has become a national model for a technology-driven public school. Part of the Denver Public School System, DSST provides both a middle and high school education that emphasizes math, technology and science. The school has patterned itself as college prep. The groundbreaking program offered by the school has led to unprecedented success by its students. To date, one hundred percent of the students have been accepted to college. That success has attracted much national attention, including a $1 million dollar donation by Oprah Winfrey, as well as an additional $12 Million by other philanthropists to support and expand the concept. The American Architectural Foundation recognized the DSST Stapleton campus as a well-designed school.

Steve White

Guide Author
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Top 10 Neighborhood Amenities in Stapleton, Colorado