About Denver

A Description of Denver
Denver is a clean, young and green city with over 200 parks and dozens of tree-lined boulevards. The architecture reflects the city’s three boom periods: Victorian, when silver was discovered in Leadville; turn-of-the-century, when gold was discovered in Cripple Creek; and contemporary, when the energy boom added 16 skyscrapers to the downtown skyline in a three year period, 1980-1983.

Unlike some Western cities, Denver has a central downtown area. Here, within easy walking distance, are 5,200 hotel rooms, the city’s convention complex, performing arts complex, and a wide variety of shops, department stores, and restaurants. Also within easy walking distance are some of the city’s top attractions including the U.S. Mint, Denver Art Museum and Colorado History Museum. A mile-long pedestrian mall cuts through the heart of downtown Denver and is surrounded by a series of parks and plazas that soften the towering skyscrapers and provide viewpoints from which to see and appreciate the modern architecture.

Lower Downtown (called “LoDo” by locals) is on the northern edge of downtown Denver and offers one of the nation’s greatest concentrations of Victorian buildings and warehouses, many of which have been refurbished to house restaurants, art galleries, offices and shops. Downtown is also the home of Auraria Campus where three colleges have over 30,000 students.

Denver’s Climate
Nothing about Denver is more misunderstood than the city’s climate. Located just east of a high mountain barrier and a long distance from any moisture source, Denver has a mild, dry and arid climate. The city receives only 8-15 inches (20.3 – 38 cm) of precipitation a year (about the same as Los Angeles), and records 300 days of sunshine a year — more annual hours of sun than San Diego or Miami Beach.  Winters are mild with an average daily high of 45 degrees Fahrenheit, 7 degrees Celsius in February, warmer than New York, Boston, Chicago or St. Louis. Snow does fall, but it usually melts in a short time. Golf courses remain open all year and have been played on as many as 30 days in January. Chinook winds (a wind blowing down from a mountain that gains heat as it loses elevation) can bring 60 degree F (16 degrees C) weather to Denver at any time throughout the winter.  In summer, dry relative humidity makes Denver feel cool and comfortable, offering natural air conditioning. Fall is a particularly delightful time to visit the city and make day excursions to the mountains to view the colorful changing of the aspens, an event that takes place from mid-September until mid-October.

Denver’s Population
Denver has more than doubled in population since 1960. The City & County of Denver has a population of 510,000 making it larger than the entire population of Wyoming (which has 480,000 people). The six-county metro area has a population of 2.3 million. Denver’s population has increased by 23% since 1990. Denver is the 20th largest metro area in America, and has the 10th largest downtown area. Metro Denver has a minority population of 20.6% with 5.3% Black; 12.2% Hispanic; 2.3% Asian; and 0.8% Native American. The median age is 32.9 slightly below the U.S. median of 33.2. All of Colorado is experiencing a population boom with over 700,000 people moving to the state in the last decade.