Speer Urban Hiking No One Lives Here

Shhh! Here’s the funny thing about Speer. It’s the neighborhood with the most millennials in Denver (42% of the neighborhood’s population is between 25-34!), yet lots of folks don’t know they live here.

That’s a funny thing living in one of the most convenient neighborhoods in Denver, yet no one knows where it is. But if you say Alamo Placita or West Wash Park, everyone says ah-ha. Problem is, according to the City of Denver, Alamo Placita and West Wash Park don’t exist. But Speer does.

In the Middle of Everything, Almost

The Speer neighborhood’s boundaries lie just south of Cap Hill and Cheesman, east of Baker and north of Wash Park. Officially, they are Seventh Avenue to the north, Downing Street to the east, Alameda Avenue to the south, and Broadway to the west. Yet person after person, when walking in the neighborhood and when we asked where they lived, not one said, “Speer.”

Grandiose!

Funny how the neighborhood named after a Mayor who had some of the biggest impact on Denver is practically anonymous. Mayor Speer, who lived in a now-torn-down home in Alamo Placita and who developed the area along with creating the City Beautiful movement which brought the large boulevards, City Park, Civic Park, and many other landmarks Denverites love, would have probably been a bit embarrassed that no one knows where his namesake is. He certainly was a showman, and the homes in the neighborhood showcase his grandiose-ness as well.

Walk this Way

None the less, this wonderful neighborhood filled with homes from 1890-1930s or so and split in half by Speer Boulevard and the Cherry Creek, has wonderful community, convenience and connected-ness to downtown. It made for a great walk, too, despite having to brave the crossing of Logan and Speer to complete this 3.4 mile route.

The route:

Start at Alamo Placita park; a good address to locate it is 354 N Ogden St. Walk north to E 7th Ave, taking a left.

You’ll be walking on the border of Speer and Cap Hill neighborhoods with large homes on both sides of the street. At Grant St, take a left.

Cross Speer, getting a nice look at Cherry Creek and the Cherry Creek trail. At E 3rd Ave, take a right, then take a left on Sherman.

Continue down Sherman. Just north of 1st on the east side of the street hangs a wonderful tea-bag curtain as a piece of art in a window. Keep going south to E Cedar Ave, take a left.

You’ll be walking in the Historic Grant Street District. Take a left on Clarkson.

At 1st St, take a right and then a left on Emerson. Take a moment and view the memorial to the 1965 Hungarian uprising in Hungarian Freedom Park which commemorates the 1956 revolt of Hungarians against Soviet oppression. The lion fountain, designed in 1932 by Maurice Bardin, was placed in the park in 1976.

After enjoying the park, continue north across Speer one more time, then take an immediate right on E 3rd Ave. When you reach Alamo Placita park, enjoy the gardens on the south side of 3rd, which still honor the original layout designed by Saco Resnik DeBoer.

Take a left on Ogden, returning you back to the start.
Click here to see the route, map, and turn by turn directions.

What did you enjoy about this walk? How would you change it?

See you on the trail

~Chris