Peer review of Jackson Fuller’s presentation: Suburbanization in the Denver-Metro Area
As someone who was an audience member of this presentation with no knowledge of the subject, I came out of the presentation feeling very informed and knowledgeable about the suburbanization of Denver.
I thought the part of most significance were the maps about the census tracts. Spanning from 1950 to 2020 we can see just how important suburbanization became to Colorado and Denver more specifically. On the 1950 map, there is hardly any data besides the areas between Lakewood and Arapahoe. Jumping to almost present-day in 2020, the data spans from Barr Lake to Pike National Forest. This would not be possible without Denver’s interstate system, and specifically, I-25.
As someone who likes to learn about American history, and American President’s history, I really liked the mention of Dwight Eisenhower’s National Interstate and Defense Highway Act. Although we have never had to use the interstate’s for military purposes (knock on wood) this was a great way to set the scene for how the interstate’s around Denver helped to inadvertently create suburbanization.
In the presentation, it talks about how I-25 today “Is one of the two major interstates that go directly into the heart of Denver.” The presentation also talks about how “I 25 has made an obvious difference as well, greatly expanding the range of the Denver Metro area north and south.” In looking at the expansion of Denver in 1970.
One critique I have of this presentation is how the census data is residents per square mile. It would be hard to think of a different way to measure population for such a small area without using a metric like this one, but it makes it harder to also compare the earlier years against the latter years.
Overall, I really enjoyed this presentation and thought it was great. I’m glad I learned something about another state’s interstate system and how that played a key role into the suburbanization of Denver. Great job!