Despite the bustling street bearing its name, the Speer neighborhood is a quiet residential area. Since the early 2010s, this area has seen growth in residential and commercial properties, making it a perfect spot for families, young professionals, retirees, and more. The Speer neighborhood is bordered north and south by Seventh Ave and Alameda and Downing and Broadway to the east and west.
Denver Population: 693,417
Median Resident Age
Denver Median Resident Age: 34.6
Median Income Per Resident
Denver Median Income Per Resident: $41,778
Median Income Per Household
Denver Median Income Per Household: $64,973
Denver Median Rent: $1,255
Median Home Value
Denver Median Home Value: $399,216
% homes owner occupied (vs. renter)
Denver % of homes owner occupied (vs. renter): 50%
% homes occupied (vs. vacant)
Denver % home occupied (vs. vacant): 94%
Speer-Year Home Was Built
Data for Year Home Was Built-Speer Compared to Denver
|1940 - 1949||3%||7%|
|1950 - 1959||10%||15%|
|1060 - 1969||22%||11%|
|1970 - 1979||15%||14%|
|1980 - 1989||6%||7%|
|1990 - 1999||5%||7%|
|2000 - 2009||2%||12%|
|2010 - 2013||3%||4%|
Data for Resident Ethnicity-Speer Compared to Denver
|Two or more||2%||2%|
Speer-Resident Education Level
Data for Resident Education Level-Speer Compared to Denver
|Bachelor or higher||72%||48%|
|HS grad or Equiv||7%||17%|
|Less than HS||2%||13%|
Data for Resident Age-Speer Compared to Denver
|10 - 19||4%||10%|
|20 - 29||26%||18%|
|30 - 39||29%||20%|
|40 - 49||13%||13%|
|50 - 59||9%||11%|
|60 - 69||8%||9%|
|70 - 79||4%||5%|
Registered Neighborhood Organizations
Alamo Placita, which means “little cottonwood plaza” in Spanish, is located 3 miles southeast of downtown Denver and is bounded by East 7th Avenue to the north, Downing Street to the east, and the Cherry Creek to the southwest....
Alamo Placita, which means “little cottonwood plaza” in Spanish, is located 3 miles southeast of downtown Denver and is bounded by East 7th Avenue to the north, Downing Street to the east, and the Cherry Creek to the southwest. It was purchased in 1864 by Moses Hallett, an attorney from Illinois, but by 1889 he had sold it to the Arlington Park Land and Improvement Company and became one of their investors. Speer was in the real estate business and the Arlington Park Land and Improvement Company became his first major client. It wasn’t long before Speer was involved in starting the Arlington Park amusement park, which opened its doors on July 4th, 1892. Over 12,000 people attended, perhaps to see the main event, which was a spectacular performance called “The Last Days of Pompeii”, in which Speer used 300 actors and a 64-foot tall Mt. Vesuvius, which erupted in fireworks. Just as the park’s future seemed bright, the Silver Crash of 1893 occurred, which devastated the economy, forcing the park to close. Victorian houses from this early development boom prior to the Silver Crash can still be seen throughout the neighborhood today. After 1893, the area remained largely undeveloped for the next 20 to thirty years.
In 1898, Chutes Park opened on the old Arlington site, advertising themselves as the “Coney Island of the West”. They had three new main attractions. First, just as the name suggests, there was a large waterfall ride, in which riders in boats flowed down the graded falls to a lake below. The next attraction was “Shooting the Chutes” with Miss Sadie Boynton. Spectators would watch in amazement as she rode down the falls on a bicycle. Third, there were Professor Barnes’ diving elks. He had actually trained a herd of elks to climb up a 60-foot high platform and dive off into a pool of water. A couple of major fires in 1901 and then again in 1902 forced Chutes Park to permanently close. Robert Speer used the experience he gained from planning the Arlington Park addition to Alamo Placita, as well as the connections he formed promoting the amusement park, to run for public office.
By 1930, records show that over 90 percent of the current historic buildings were built and by 1940 it increased to 94 percent. The types of structures built during those early years of the 20th century were single family dwellings, multifamily dwellings, as well as some commercial buildings. The popular architectural styles of that era were a mixture of bungalows, Tudor style, Spanish Mission style, and other vernacular styles that reflected the Southwest. After World War II, when the suburban building boom was drawing people out to shiny new homes in the suburbs, the Alamo Placita neighborhood became home for many working-class people looking for more affordable housing. From the 1960s through the 1980s, young professionals like teachers, doctors, and lawyers made the neighborhood home. There was also a newfound appreciation for the architecture in the area, which led to the formation of the Alamo Placita Neighbors Association. In 2000, the Denver Landmark Preservation Commission unanimously recommended designation of the Alamo Placita Historic District, based on its historical, architectural, and geographical significance.
This content was prepared by local non-profit Historic Denver, Inc., with excerpts from the organization’s Historic Denver Guides series and other research. Historic Denver was founded in 1970 and provides technical assistance to owners of historic properties, conducts research, advocates for preservation, and owns and operates District 10’s own Molly Brown House Museum at 1340 Pennsylvania. For more information, or to get answers to your historic home questions, visit www.historicdenver.org.