7.4 out of 10

Barnum West

39.7173274140246 -105.046661521415
Great for
  • Cost of Living
  • Eating Out
  • Internet Access
  • Shopping Options
  •  
Not great for
  • Schools
  • Childcare
  • Gym & Fitness
  • Medical Facilities
  • Resale or Rental Value
Who lives here?
  • Singles
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Hipsters

Reviews

5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 5/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 5/5
  • Parking 5/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 4/5
2yrs+

"Cute houses, fabulous location"

I've lived in Barnum West for about six years, and here's my take on Barnum and Barnum West:

1. Architecture. We live in one of the brick post-war veteran's cottages built around 1950. I adore our house and its beautiful architecture. Our living room has these amazing rounded edges on the tops of the walls where they meet the ceiling. And, our doorways have the most graceful arches. We even have *telephone nooks*. I love having such a large yard for gardening -- a rare and beautiful thing so close to the city. There are so many adorable houses in this neighborhood, though admittedly some are in need of a little more care than they've gotten. Very few of the houses are "big" by American standards though, so if you're looking for a very big home for a very big family, or a house that has a master suite with walk-in closets, this may not be the neighborhood for you.

2. Location. It takes me about 12 minutes to drive to the capitol building/art museum every morning -- in heavy traffic. It takes around 6 minutes to drive to Belmar, and maybe 15 minutes to the foothills. For driving, you couldn't even imagine a better location. Within 30 minutes walking distance, we have the light rail, several small grocery stores, a library, a couple of convenience stores, a couple of parks, and a huge number of locally owned restaurants and bakeries -- even two microbreweries. I suppose Dandy Dan's is also within walking distance if you're into that sort of thing.

3. This part of Denver in general does have a lot more poverty than other areas, though Barnum and Barnum West are a little better off than the surrounding neighborhoods. Those houses that do look a bit under the weather? They probably look that way because the folks who live there have bigger problems in life than when they're going to touch up their house paint or reseed their lawn. The walls around the creek do get tagged pretty often. That said, I moved into the neighborhood as a 25 year old white girl and I've never felt unsafe here, either in my house or walking around alone late at night or early in the morning. Poverty is not the same thing as crime. Folks outside their houses wave hello as I pass, neighbors chat with me when we're out gardening in the summer. etc. Last I heard, for Barnum and Barnum West, the crime rate isn't any higher than Denver in general.

I recently started a blog to keep tabs on all the new developments in the area and gather together some handy info for all of the new kids moving into the neighborhood (house tours, restaurant reviews, photos, links, etc.). So, if you're looking for more info, please feel free to drop by: http://www.welcometobarnum.blogspot.com
Pros
  • Great old homes
  • Large yards
  • Lots of small businesses and restaurants
  • Good city/mountain views
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Hipsters
  • Students
  • Trendy & Stylish
2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 2/5
  • Safe & Sound 1/5
  • Clean & Green 1/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 1/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 1/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 1/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 1/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 1/5
  • Schools 1/5
  • Childcare 2/5
2yrs+

"Not the best neighborhood to consider raising children"

The Barnum West neighborhood has been around for many years and this shows in the architecture of the homes that lie within it's boundaries. The majority of the homes were built in the late 1940s to late 1950s. They are a mixture of small, charming homes with character, with most of them being just one or two bedroom homes. Unfortunately, some haven't been taken care of well and they are run down. Not all are this way, but those that are detract from this neighborhood making it less than stellar.

Another unfortunate problem with this area is the crime rate, which is higher than average for Denver. I suppose it's never a good sign when a bail bondsman is located right in the neighborhood. The schools these children go to are some of the lowest ranking in the state, which is so unfortunate for those who go to them. Many of the residents here (about 40%) have never finished high school. Although there are all different types of occupations people who live here have, the majority of residents work in construction.

The population of this area is just over 5,500 residents. The median household income here is lower than both the state average as well as the average for Denver residents. Although this area may be right for some people, I wouldn't recommend it for families with children.
Pros
  • Potentially great homes
  • Good city/mountain views
Cons
  • Poorly rated schools
  • crime
  • some areas feel run-down
  • West Denver as a whole has bad reputation for crime
AdamD2
AdamD2 Where are you getting your facts as far as high school graduation rate, higher than average crime rate, etc? I'm just curious to know as my wife and I are looking for a house in that area.
May 02, 2016
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3/5 rating details
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
2yrs+

"Perhaps one of the better West Denver choices"

Like Barnum as a whole, Barnum West is a square neighborhood of neat grid-system streets and smallish, boxy cottages. These homes date from the middle of the last century. Those that have been well-maintained have mellowed nicely, and some have been remodeled, painted bright colors, or neatly landscaped. The stretch of Alameda on the southern border feels run-down, but the western border, on Sheridan, offers some markets, bars, drugstores, carnicerias, and an outpost of the locally famous Santiago’s Mexican restaurant. In the afternoons, kids multitask, riding bikes on the street while eating ice cream on a stick.

Barnum is part of the block of West Denver that shares a common character: developed in the middle of the last century, with home prices and incomes lower than the city average, a strong minority presence, specifically of Hispanic/Latino groups, and commercial development concentrated around Federal Boulevard. Like the other neighborhoods in the area, there are still spots in Barnum West that are unsafe or might have a derelict feel to them. Yet Barnum and Barnum West don’t have bad reputations to the extent that some of the surrounding areas do. If you’re looking to settle on the west side of town, you’d likely enjoy a better quality of life here than in Westwood or Athmar Park. In the late afternoon, with the sun slanting into the big old cottonwoods and the wind tossing the flowers in one of the lush gardens, it looks downright cute. If you're adventurous and confident in your urban common sense, this could be one to try.
Pros
  • Potentially great homes
Cons
  • West Denver as a whole has bad reputation for crime
  • some areas feel run-down
2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 1/5
  • Clean & Green 1/5
  • Pest Free 1/5
  • Peace & Quiet 1/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
2yrs+

"Bad neighborhood - pass it by"

I hate to say it, but avoid Barnum West, especially if you have kids. It's attractive because of the really low home prices and the fact that there are many old homes with lots of potential. But you get what you pay for. There are many old family businesses, too, which is cool, but still... It's a bad neighborhood with lots of crime. It's a neighborhood that I want to like, but it is just too dangerous for me. I think that if the economy recovers, this area could become the next big thing, but things are way too unstable for that to happen anytime soon.
This is really a place that, for the most part, I just drive by anytime I get on the 6th Ave Freeway. It's in that depressing-looking part of town that you see as you head toward the mountains. From the south side, (when you go down W Alameda Ave) it's scary looking, as well. The views from that neighborhood would be great if it was a place that you would choose to live. If you're adventurous enough to live in a sketchy part of town (and you don't have kids), then it might be worth looking into. But, sorry to say, I would give it a miss.
Pros
  • Potentially great homes
  • Good city/mountain views
Cons
  • crime
Recommended for
  • Singles

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