15 October 2005

The E-470 Corridor.

E-470 is one of the most expensive toll roads in the nation. To drive its entire length of a little less than 50 miles looping around the Eastern and Northern ends of the Denver metropolitan area (C-470 to the South and West is free), costs $9.75.

The corridor adjacent to it is also the core of planned growth for the City of Aurora, to Denver's East, whose Southern expansion through annexation was thwarted by the formation of the City of Centennial.

Aurora's planning department this summer identified almost 40 developments either under way or on the drawing board along the fast-growing E-470 corridor.

Taken together, the developments represent an area the size of Lakewood.

When built out, the developments represent 69,286 housing units, where an estimated 180,170 people could live, increasing the city's population by almost 65 percent.

In today's dollars, that conservatively represents $20 billion in new residential construction.

It may take 40-50 years for all of the projects to be built out, however. The area of the developments, according to a print edition of a map in the hard copy Rocky Mountain News, is about 26 square miles (the article text, however, states that the area is comparable to the Lakewood, Colorado's area which has 144,000 people in 45 square miles). In other words, while they are hardly the utopian New Urbanist communities that many urban planners would like, it is also pretty dense for suburban development. Certainly, these are not ex-urbs (often defined as properties with 2 to 5 acre or larger average lot sizes, which translates into under 1,000 people per square mile or less).

The details, as in anyh long range plan, are conceptual, but this is a place to look as one looks to the future of the Denver metro area's growth.


Julie O. said...

My parents take that toll road whenever they drive down from Cheyenne, as they hate congested city traffic. They don't mind paying for less aggravation. I do mind paying.

I find those Fast Pass white boxes on the windshields to be insidious. Instead of being aware of how much it costs to use a toll road every time you use it, the amount gets deducted automatically.

Denvoran said...

Contrary to the posting above, Aurora's growth to the south has not been "thwarted" by the formation of Centennial. Aurora's boundaries extended into Douglas County *before* the city's incorporation. Indeed, Aurora surrounds the eastern portion of Centennial on all sides - it would be more accurate to say that Centennial filled in some holes that Aurora had skipped over as it grew south; and while further expansion to the south and east is possible for Aurora, Centennial's boundaries are essentially fixed.