Jefferson County Neighborhoods:
Mayberry of JeffCo’s Foothills
Metro District offices: 955 Moss Street, Golden 80401
4,654 population • property tax 5 mills • $660,000 budget •
The two square miles between Colfax and Old Golden Road was farmland until the post World War II housing boom expanded to today’s 1600 residential units. A log way station was built in 1859 near a spring at today’s junction of Mt. Vernon and South Golden Roads. George Pullman arrived in 1860 to earn enough money from outfitting gold seekers to build his sleeper railcars. Travelers enjoyed sleeping at the station house on 1600 acres, which he named Cold Springs Ranch. By 1864, Pullman returned to Illinois with $20,000 earned from business ventures to build his famed sleeper cars. His land was acquired by several investors, including Jonas Morrison Johnson, who served as a Jefferson County Commissioner and became Sheriff.
In 1891, the Denver, Lakewood & Golden railway established its line through the Cold Springs Ranch and Pullman Heights subdivision began to be developed. In 1905, the Colorado National Guard established a training center near South Golden Road and named it Camp George. One of the stone buildings served as an officer’s club and restaurant, which is now known as the infamous Rock Rest Lodge. During the late 1920s, the restaurant/bar was owned by George Morrison, an African-American musician. After World War II, several owners welcomed bikers until a gun fight between Hell’s Angels and Sons of Silence closed the place for several years. Since Charlie Eirngher purchased it in 1996, the Rock Rest Lodge has become popular with locals and visitors.
Pleasant View Metropolitan District was formed in 1948 and the Water/Sanitation District was formed in 1952. District boundaries are 6th Ave frontage road to 15th Ave. and South Table Mountain, Coors St. to Ulysses St. The District has acquired 80 acres of land for four parks with JeffCo Open Space grants. The district maintains an equestrian arena, a grandstand for baseball, 4 parks with tennis and basketball courts, 3 ball-fields, and 40 acres of Camp George West Park with access to South Table Mountain for hiking and biking. The District plans to restore a historic Camp George West building that could become an events center.
Pleasant View has rejected many invitations to join the municipality of Golden. Both are nationally recognized as a “tree city.” The volunteer fire department is part of the Metro District and has an outstanding reputation for excellence. Today’s 42 volunteer firefighters and three employees protect the Colorado Mills Mall and Denver West shopping center in Lakewood. Fire Chief Chris Malmgren is a 44-year Pleasant View resident and has been a firefighter for 26 years. The department ran 743 calls in 2007, including 428 EMS/rescue and 119 good intent.
Currently about 25% of the residential units are rentals and 35% are owned by retired residents. The affordable housing is attracting young families and middle-age professionals. The convenient location and future light rail transportation will increase real estate values within ten years. To further enhance fire protection operations, voters approved a mill levy increase to 7 mills by a vote of 280 to 262 in May, 2008.
Traditions: April Arbor Day celebration; June BBQ at Rock Rest Lodge; July Pancake breakfast; August family fun day; Santa Claus visits in December.
Public Schools: Pleasant View and Welchester Elementary, Bell Junior and Golden High School.
Organized: The elected Metro District board is similar to a city council that produces a quarterly newsletter; Neighborhood Watch is being organized; active Elks and Lions Clubs, Boy Scout Troops.
Real estate values: $100,000 to $1 million. Beginning restoration and scrap-offs. Plus: Location, location, location! Easy access to commute, hike, bike, shop, etc. Close-knit, local control.
Minus: Some rental units are not well maintained.