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Sweetgrass neighborhood lands spot on this year’s Denver Parade of Homes

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By Jeremy Johnson

DACONO — On the heels of numerous local and statewide news reports touting Weld County’s growth — and just a few months after Tri-Town neighbor Firestone was named one of the best cities for home ownership in Colorado — Dacono is receiving some real estate accolades of its own.

A home in the Sweetgrass neighborhood will be featured in the Mile High City’s upcoming Parade of Homes, which begins Aug. 7 and runs through Labor Day.

Heralded as the largest Denver Parade of Homes to date, the event will feature 74 dwellings, according to a press release July 16 from the Home Builders Association of Metro Denver. Included in those homes — which range from the reasonable ($220,000) to the rich ($1.3 million) — is a $280,000 ranch-style dwelling located at 3162 Sweetgrass Pkwy., in the popular Dacono subdivision.

“The City of Dacono is thrilled to have our community showcased in the Denver Parade of Homes,” said Dacono Mayor Charles Sigman. “Sweetgrass is a fantastic neighborhood in our growing city.”

 

A blueprint for growth

One of several like it along the ever-expanding Interstate 25 corridor, the approximately 1-square-mile Sweetgrass subdivision first came to fruition about a decade ago as a way to provide more affordable housing along the busy highway north of Denver. 

“(Sweetgrass was) designed to meet the housing needs of north metro Denver while providing the roots of an economy for the small but growing municipality of Dacono,” according to a summary on the website for Community Development Group, of Boulder. “Located adjacent to (Interstate 25) in Dacono, Sweetgrass offers a major window for the city to capture commercial and retail opportunities, together with recreational facilities and distinctive but affordable residential neighborhoods.”

Jennifer Krieger, Dacono’s community development director, described the neighborhood as a “large, master-planned, mixed use community,” and a map of the master plan shows plots neatly divided into residential, commercial and industrial — the latter includes about a half-dozen existing oil and gas wells.

Legitimate infrastructure and growth aside, the inclusion in the upcoming Parade of Homes is the whipped cream on top of the Tri-Town’s increasingly large slice of pie for Mayor Sigman.

“The Tri-Town area is certainly gaining in popularity,” Sigman said. “Our location relative to the metro area, convenient access to employment centers, quality school district and a variety of homes make this a very desirable area for families.”

 

If you build them,
they will come

The ranch home being featured in Sweetgrass could well serve as a showcase for what will likely be thousands like it that will crop up in coming years.

In March 2014, online financial consultant website NerdWallet.com named Firestone the best city in all of Colorado to own a home, citing its 13.5 percent population increase between 2010 and 2012, reasonable real estate costs and ample outdoor opportunities. Weld County’s Windsor (considered part of Larimer County, too) also made the list, at No. 5, and Firestone was followed closely by nearby Erie (Weld and Boulder counties) at No. 2. Rounding out the northern Front Range was Commerce City, ranked at No. 8.

So, with all that ballyhoo being made over figures showing significant growth all along the northern Front Range over the past couple of years — according to reports, Weld County was the 75th fastest growing county in the nation, for instance — much planning is taking place to address predictions of continued growth.

Consequently, the Community Development Group (CDG) has several similar existing or proposed subdivisions which, like Sweetgrass, are “master planned” communities that highlight the best features of a region. For example, Wyndham Hill, less than two miles to the north of Sweetgrass near the intersection of Route 52 and I-25, focuses “on preserving the historic pattern of Old Town Frederick by integrating trails, open space and scenic streetscapes into the gridded street system. Residents will enjoy the balance between tree-lined neighborhood streets and the commercial and mixed-use sites that provide the town an improved tax base,” according to CDG.

Plans are also in the works for Miner’s Village, slated to be located along the “major artery between Frederick, Firestone and Dacono” at the intersection of state Highway 52 and Colorado Boulevard: “The residential mix will consist of several individual neighborhoods which are reminiscent of Frederick’s small town history,” CDG’s description reads.

 

Contact Staff Writer Jeremy Johnson at 303-659-2522, ext. 217, or jjohnson@metrowestnewspapers.com.