Living in Wheat Ridge Colorado
Wheat Ridge embodies the deep roots of a city with a rich history and a strong sense of community. Its central location provides shorts commutes to the majestic Rocky Mountains and all the amenities of the large metropolitan City of Denver, Colorado. With easy access to I-70, you can be skiing, hiking or participating in a wide range of internationally-acclaimed mountain sports in less than an hour. The golden hills of wheat noted by travelers passing along the Overland Trail was how Wheat Ridge was named. As unsuccessful miners returned to the area and began farming the rich, fertile soil, the community began its growth.
Wheat fields were converted to fruit orchards and vegetable fields, attracting buyers from all across the Denver area. Eventually, the fruit and vegetable farming gave way to greenhouses and the largest production of carnations in the world, earning Wheat Ridge the designation of “Carnation City.” Wheat Ridge is a Denver West suburb. The city has a population of approximately 31,500. Wheat Ridge is a relatively young incorporated city with a history based on agriculture. It grew from a popular rest stop for travelers during the Gold Rush of 1859 to a thriving agricultural and suburban community. As real estate and homes for sale rose to provide housing for the Denver workforce, major transportation corridors extending from Denver are keeping pace.
You can view details, listing information and photos of available homes for sale in Wheat Ridge at the bottom of this page.
If you want to live close to the vibrant life Denver offers, but you want to live in a rural neighborhood, Wheat Ridge is your home. Wheat Ridge elevation is 5,459 feet, just a bit higher than Denver, the Mile High City. As a suburb of Denver, Wheat Ridge is a vital part of the Denver metro area and Jefferson County Colorado. The Rocky Mountains are only minutes away and easily accessible. Wheat Ridge has experienced substantial population growth and development over the last 40 years and is mostly built out with a combination of residential, commercial and office uses.
Wheat Ridge neighborhoods are broad and diverse. Recent zoning changes have allowed for urban agriculture. There has been a resurgence in all parts of the city. City regulations allow homeowners to engage in a range of urban agricultural activities, including growing and selling produce and keeping animals such as bees and chickens. There are several neighborhoods rapidly appreciating; Lakeside, Kipling, Barths, Fruitdale and Bel Aire lead the pack. For more in-depth information on Wheat Ridge areas, click here
A Summary of the Three Uses Permitted in Each Zoning District are;
Urban Gardens – an urban garden is defined as an area of land formally managed, organized, and maintained by an individual or group of people to grow and harvest food crops and non-food ornamental crops, such as flowers. Typical examples of urban gardens include: • Community gardens, where plots of land are leased for a minimal cost and crops are usually consumed or donated • Market gardens, where crops are sold for profit • Community supported agriculture (CSA), where plants are sold or given for shareholder consumption. Urban gardens are allowed in all zone districts, including residential. Farmers’ Markets – farmers’ markets are allowed in any zone district, except in residential zone districts where the primary use is a single-or two-family home. Farmers’ markets require a business license. Produce Stands – a food stand is a temporary structure where agricultural products such as raw vegetables, fruits, herbs, flowers, plants, nuts, honey, and eggs are sold. The fresh farm products such as jams and jellies may also be sold from produce stands. Food stands require a business license. Local Farms in Wheat Ridge; Clear Creek Organics, Sweet Ridge Farm, True Roots, Circle Fresh Farms, Five Fridges Farm, Roost Farms, Community Development (CSA)
The City is a part of the Jefferson County School System, nationally recognized for having the highest equivalency test scores in the nation for grades one through twelve. Within the Jefferson County System, Wheat Ridge has one high school, two middle schools, six elementary schools, and six private schools. Families with children need to know what Wheat Ridge education opportunities are available. Wheat Ridge public schools spend $9,727 per student. The average school expenditure in the U.S. is $12,383. There are about 18 students per teacher in Wheat Ridge. An excellent source for school ratings is GreatSchools click here. Wheat Ridge Elementary schools have stellar ratings. Prospect Valley scores an impressive 8-out of 10 with Great Schools. Willemore Davis scores a 7, Kullerstrand scores a 6, and Mountain Phoenix scores a 5. For more detailed info click here. Wheat Ridge High School ranks highest with Great Schools click here. Students have the opportunity to take Advanced Placement® course work and exams. The AP® participation rate at Wheat Ridge High School is 52 percent. The student body makeup is 49 percent male and 51 percent female, and the total minority enrollment is 46 percent. Wheat Ridge High School is 1 of 35 high schools in the Jefferson County School District No. R-1. Rating high schools in Wheat Ridge can be evaluated at click here You can also check out click here
Incorporated in 1969, the City continues to work in partnership with its citizens and business community and serves as the home of more than 1,500 companies. Wheat Ridge is dedicated to the promotion of quality business and land development. Wheat Ridge is proud to be the home of firms like Exempla Lutheran Hospital, Applejack Liquors, King Soopers, Safeway Stores, Integrated Resource Systems, Wheat Ridge Cyclery and other locally owned businesses. City staff and City Council are committed to helping residents “Find it and Buy it in Wheat Ridge.” Compared to the rest of the country, Wheat Ridge’s cost of living is 27.30% higher than the U.S. average. The cost of living is on par with the entire Denver Metro area. While the cost of living may be a bit above average, job growth has been exceptional. Jobs have increased by 1.84% over the past year. The average salary in Wheat Ridge is $49,003. The unemployment rate in Wheat Ridge is 4.20 percent (U.S. avg. is 5.20%).
The average household size is 2.16 people. 23.29% of people are married, with children. 19.03% have children but are single. The median household income and the median family income is $59,275. The top employers are educational services, health care, and social assistance 21.4%; professional, scientific, management, administrative and waste management services 12.3%; retail trade (12.1%). The median cost of Wheat Ridge homes is $344,600. Home appreciation the last ten years has been 25.70%. For the last decade, the Denver Metro has significantly improved its infrastructure which has helped produce a tremendous increase of jobs and better traffic control. Average commute time is 24 minutes. The National Average is 26 minutes.
Wheat Ridge violent crime rates, on a scale from 1 to 100, is 33. The US average is 31.1. Property crime rates in Wheat Ridge, on a scale from 1 to 100, is 52. The US average is 38.1. The data may indicate a bit higher than average crime, but keep in mind, this is a densely populated metro area. When compared to other large cities, the numbers don’t look that bad. For more info click here
The City maintains 20 developed parks, four lakes and a 250-acre greenbelt and conservation area. A six-and-a-half mile, family-friendly, multi-purpose trail system runs through the greenbelt along Clear Creek and connects the regional trail system on the east and west, and a three-mile crusher trail runs through the conservation area. A 70,000 square-foot Recreation Center, indoor and outdoor leisure and lap pools, 18 ball fields, eight tennis courts and a fully outfitted playground for the physically challenged serves the needs of a diverse community. The Wheat Ridge Active Adult Center (formerly Senior/Community Center) offers a healthy and comfortable environment for the 50 and over crowd, providing classes, special activities and social opportunities.