Denver District 5 | January 2022
720-337-5555 |  DenverCouncil5@denvergov.org
Senior Aide: Logan Fry | Aide: Jenn Gross | Aide: Felicia Rodriguez |
Dear Neighbors, 

I hope you had a wonderful New Year and are staying safe from the Omicron variant. I had COVID in early January and can attest that it is not fun! I know we are all exhausted by this pandemic, but please continue to wear masks, wash your hands, and help keep our community safe. Experts expect that the peak cases will be this week and that it should fall off after that. We shall see, but I remain hopeful.

2022 promises to be another exciting year in the City of Denver. Our office is working on many projects including two traffic studies and our gun buyback program. There are also numerous City-wide initiatives and events happening, especially Council boundary redistricting. I hope that you will get involved! Please see below for more information on upcoming events and happenings.

As always, feel free to reach out if the D5 Team can be of assistance!

Gratefully,

Councilwoman Amanda Sawyer
District 5
Speak with CW Sawyer about the issues on your mind! Due to the uptick in COVID cases, Office Hours will be held virtually by private phone or Zoom appointment. In-person Office Hours are by appointment only. Please email our office or call 720-337-5555 to reserve an appointment. If you're unavailable for these dates, please contact our office to schedule an appointment at another time. 
  • Thursday, January 20, 8:30am-10:30pm
  • Friday, January 28, 11:00am-1:00pm
  • Thursday, February 3, 11:00-1:00pm
  • Thursday, February 10, 11:00-1:00pm
CW Sawyer and Aurora CM Gardner to Launch Gun Buyback Program
In late November, CW Sawyer and City of Aurora At-Large Councilmember Curtis Gardner announced a Joint Community Gun Buyback Program that will launch this year to help reduce the incidence of gun violence in both cities. RAWtools, a Colorado Springs-based non-profit organization that works with municipalities and faith-based community partners, will host drive-through gun buyback events on the following dates:

  • March 19, 9 AM to 1 PM
  • at Empower Field at Mile High
  • April 9, 9 AM to 1 PM
  • at a location TBD
  • May 21, 9 AM to 1 PM
  • at a location TBD
  • June 11, 9 AM to 1 PM
  • at a location TBD
  • July 16, 9 AM to 1 PM
  • at a location TBD
  • August 20, 9 AM to 1 PM
  • at a location TBD
  • September 17, 9 AM to 1 PM
  • at a location TBD
  • October 15, 9 AM to 1 PM
  • at a location TBD

Residents can anonymously turn in firearms for destruction. Trained volunteers then destroy recovered firearms to ATF standards and convert them into garden tools and jewelry. While we know that individuals participating in criminal activity will not typically turn in their firearms at a buyback event, working to reduce the number of available guns in our communities is part of an overall strategy to address gun violence.

The Denver Broncos have partnered with us on our kick off event on March 19th! RAWtools, Inc., was recognized as a recipient of the 2022 Denver Broncos Inspire Change Program and was awarded $35,000.00 thru the teams Social Justice Fund. There will be eight total events this year and we are looking for volunteers to help at each event! Please click the button below to find out more information and sign up!
D5 Traffic Studies: 8th Ave. Final Recommendations; Announcing Two New Studies and Community Meeting Dates
Our traffic study of 8th Ave is complete! You can view the full memorandum of recommendations or the simplified one pager by following the links. The Department of Transportation and Infrastructure is now beginning work on the changes we identified and we expect to see upgrades being installed as early as this summer and continuing over the next several years.

You also may have heard that our office will again partner with local traffic engineering firm Fehr & Peers and surrounding neighborhood organizations to conduct two additional traffic studies: 6th Ave. from Colorado Blvd. to Quebec St., and Dayton St. from Alameda Ave. to Mississippi Ave. These two studies will include surveys, data collection, and community meetings. Join us for our virtual kickoff meetings by signing up through the buttons below!
D5's Annual #SEDenverGivesBlood Drive Runs Through January 31 - Schedule Your Appointment Today!
Our office is again partnering with Lowry business Vitalant to collect 75 blood donations in January, which will save as many as 225 lives. Vitalant's Lowry location is at 717 Yosemite St, just north of Great Lawn Park. Throughout our state Vitalant must collect more than 3,000 blood donations each week to meet the demands of their hospital partners. Click here to learn more about current national and regional blood supply. You can give blood at any Vitalant location and still participate in the Southeast Denver Gives Blood Drive. Click here to learn more, find out if you're eligible to donate, how to donate funds, and moreThank you to the 36 residents who have already signed up to donate!
Redistricting is Here!
Every 10 years, City Council is required to draw new district boundaries based on Census data. Denver has 13 council members and a mayor. The mayor and two at-large council members are elected by all residents of Denver, whereas 11 council members are elected by residents of their council district.

Denver City Council will make the 2022 redistricting process inclusive and accessible to all residents of Denver, and is encouraging residents to participate throughout the process. January 1 - January 31, you can help Define your Denver by drawing your Council Districts. Following that there will be six community meetings held:



We hope everyone in District 5 will participate in this process. You can learn more here. Please don't hesitate to reach out with any questions.
Solid Waste Pickup Reroute
As you have probably heard. Solid Waste has changed many of their routes. The new routes took effect on Jan 3. The trash, recycling and compost collection calendars were loaded into the Denver Trash and Recycling mobile app, providing another way for customers to easily check their 2022 trash collection schedules.

Here are all the ways you can find out what day of the week to set out carts:

What to know as we implement new routes:
  • Solid Waste anticipates there will be learning curves for both drivers and customers.
  • Customers that forget to set out their carts on their new trash collection day should call 311 (720-913-1311) to let DOTI know. After making that call to 311, they should set out their cart and DOTI will empty it within 24-48 hours.
  • If a customer sets out their cart correctly (on their new collection day by 7 a.m.) and DOTI doesn’t empty the cart, just leave the cart out. DOTI will be aware of any routes that it misses and will address those missed pickups within 24 to 48 hours.
  • FYI - The Treecycle pickup program has been extended an additional week and will now conclude on Jan 21.
Lowry Foundation Warm Clothing Drive - Please Donate!
As part of an on-going clothing drive, the Lowry Foundation is collecting new and gently-used child and adult sized winter hats, gloves/mittens and scarves for those in the community who need a little extra warmth this winter. Drop donations at the Eisenhower Chapel at 293 Roslyn Street on Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays between 10:00am and 3:00pm. Lowry Foundation will distribute donations to Mile high Behavioral Health, Colorado Coalition for the Homeless and St. Francis Center. If you have questions, click here to email Lowry Foundation Executive Director Jamie Melissa Wilms or call 303-344-0481.
Rental Property Tenants Rights and Resources Document
On May 3, 2021, the Denver City Council passed a new ordinance requiring a Residential Rental Property license for any person to offer, provide, or operate a residential rental property in the City and County of Denver. Beginning Jan. 1, landlords must provide a written lease and a copy of the Denver Tenant Rights and Resources document, which is now up on the Residential Rental Property webpage in English and Spanish versions.
You can sign up for the Residential Rental Property Bulletin here to receive updates directly from Excise and Licenses.
Remember to Clear Snow From Around Your Home/Business, and Sign Up to be a Snow Angel
Be a great neighbor! Everyone enjoys safe, clear sidewalks – and it’s everyone’s responsibility to keep the sidewalks adjacent to their home or business clear and accessible. Shovel all sidewalks, wheelchair ramps, and bus stops around your home as soon as it's practical and safe. Businesses have four hours after the snow stops to shovel, and residents have 24 hours. Reminder: RTD only shovels bus stops that have a shelter. If it’s just a sign with no shelter, the resident/business is responsible for this sidewalk.
 
Show kindness and offer to help your neighbors if they aren't able to shovel! Click here to volunteer to be an official “snow angel” at or just do a #NeighborCheck. There are all sorts of reasons why people may need assistance, or they may just not know what the City’s rules are for keeping sidewalks clear. A simple conversation with a neighbor or just lending that helping hand will almost always resolve a snowy sidewalk faster than the city can, and it will preserve city resources for the rest of Denver’s 3,000 miles of sidewalks. Here are a few tips - click here to learn more:
  • Use the shovel to push the snow; don't lift it.
  • Shovel early! When snow isn't shoveled, it gets packed down and becomes ice.
  • Shovel snow into your yard and not into roadways and bike lanes. 
  • Salt can be damaging when it runs off into your lawn or the storm sewer with the snowmelt. Look for ecofriendly and pet-safe deicers.
Spring Parks Clean Up Day!
District 5 2022 Spring Parks & Open Space Clean-Up Day is Sunday, May 15th at 8:30 am. Parks and open spaces in D5 are true treasures, providing spaces for exercise, socializing, reflection and much more. Join us to spruce up half of the D5 City-managed parks this spring. Click the button below to learn more and to sign up to volunteer!
Rose Hospital Office Building Development
City Council is considering 2021-DDEICATION-0000109, a right-of-way dedication of the alley between 8th and 9th and Cherry and Dexter. This is part of a potential project from Rose Hospital to build additional office space and parking to serve the hospital. The plans the City has received involve trading the north section of the alley for private land along Dexter St and having the alley turn east and exit onto Dexter. The north part would be developed into four stories of parking and office buildings. Click on these links for more information!
Denver Water Pipe Replacement Project in Washington Virginia Vale & Hilltop - Update!
The Denver Water main replacement, that we mentioned in our December newsletter, has a few changes.

While the main replacements will still be completed on all the same streets, due to unforeseen permitting challenges, Denver Water will doing them in a different order. They will still coordinate work to accommodate upcoming paving on East Alameda Avenue. Denver Water is sending updated letters to impacted customers, letting RNOs know, if you're in the area you can view their NextDoor post for more information.
 
To see which areas are impacted, check out the map to the right or click here for a pdf you can download. If you have questions about the project, call Denver Water Customer Care at 303-893-2444.

Free Home Radon Tests Available
To encourage Denver residents to test their homes for dangerous radon gas, Denver Department of Public Health & Environment (DDPHE) is providing free radon testing kits to residents during National Radon Action Month. Seven hundred kits will be available for curbside pickup on a first come, first served basis on Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2022, from 7-10:30 a.m. at Denver Animal Shelter (1241 W. Bayaud Ave. Denver, CO 80223).
 
If your home test results show high levels of radon, DDPHE environmental scientists recommend taking a second test. Once those results confirm elevated levels, the next step is to call a professional to help clear the air. Make sure you are hiring a certified contractor, by checking with the National Radon Proficiency Program. Some residents may quality for low-cost or no-cost assistance through Colorado’s Low-Income Radon Mitigation Assistance (LIRMA) Program. DDPHE recommends testing your home every two to three years.
 
Robinson Park Update
As some of you may have seen, work has begun on the Robinson Park Playground. Halcyon Construction is performing repairs to sections of the playground. These repairs will require temporary construction fencing and partial closure of play equipment (primarily around the age 5-12 play structure). The repairs are expected to take a few weeks and the playground should be fully open by the end of the month.
If you are interested in commenting during a hearing, please review the guidelines and FAQs, and sign up to speak here. Sign-up begins 45 minutes prior to the Committee’s scheduled start time and ends 15 minutes before the meeting begins. Click here for information about how to participate virtually.

There are currently two open rezoning requests in District 5. Click here for more information and updates.

Upcoming public hearings *dates are subject to change.
Jan 18
  • 2000 Blake St
Jan 24
  • No hearings scheduled
Jan 31
  • 2115 & 2119 W 29th Ave
Feb 7
  • 901 Kearney
  • 555 E 8th Ave
Feb 14
  • 1974 & 1990 S Huron St
  • 735 Milwaukee St.
Coffee and Conversations for Entrepreneurs
Do you have a business idea but unsure where to start? Are you looking for help in launching or growing an existing business? Want to connect with like-minded entrepreneurs and build community?
Denver's Economic Development & Opportunity Department is beginning a monthly gathering intended to introduce Denver entrepreneurs to the resources available to them and facilitate important conversations and connections to other business owners and business-curious professionals. 
All meetings are held from 10:00 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.
  • Wednesday January 12, 2022 
  • Featuring Denver Public Library, BizBoost – Jay Ballenberger
  • Wednesday February 9, 2022
  • Featuring Denver Community Credit Union – Maria Gutilla
  • Wednesday March 9, 2022
  • Featuring - Mi Casa Resource Center, Daniela Ramirez Arias & Martin Diaz
Sign up is easy! Simply email Carrie Singer at Carrie.Singer@denvergov.org and you will receive the link to join the virtual event. 
Amazon Grants $500k to Non-Profits That Advance Small Business in Metro Denver, Including E. Colfax
Nine nonprofits that advance opportunities for small businesses in Metro Denver and across Colorado, including The Fax Partnership in District 5, have been awarded a total of $500,000 in grants from the Amazon Denver Community Fund, a new donor-advised fund housed at The Denver Foundation. All nine organizations focus their work on helping women entrepreneurs and BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Color) business owners succeed and grow. The resources will allow the organizations to access capital and microlending grants, develop and adopt technology support and training opportunities, and create mentoring and leadership programs. Click here to learn more and see all of the non-profits that received grants.
Tesla Supercharger Station Opens
Tesla has recently opened a new supercharger site in District 5!
The new site has 16 stalls and is located at 1st and Pontiac in BlvdOne. Stop by to check it out and do some shopping at the new stores.
Events Around Denver and D5
The D5 Team brings you just a few of the events going on in our city. To stay up-to-date on more happenings, you can sign up to receive Denver's Office of Special Events' monthly newsletter.
Pop Up Yoga Class
Monday, January 24th @ 5:30 PM
7711 E Academy Blvd
Bring a mat, towel, water, mask, and a friend for a Y6 pop up yoga class
Call or text 720-706-0556 for more info
Lowry United Neighborhoods Townhall Meeting
Tuesday, January 25th @ 7 PM
This townhall will explore public safety and crime prevention in Denver. District Attorney Beth McCann, City Attorney Marley Bordovsky, and Councilwoman Sawyer will all be present to discuss the topic. You can peruse the meeting flyer here.
Denver Municipal Band on PBS
Thursday, Feb 3 @ 7 PM
Rocky Mountain Public Broadcasting System (RMPBS) is airing a 30-minute special about the Denver Municipal Band on Feb. 3 at 7 p.m. Mountain. 
Downtown Denver Rink at Skyline Park
Open until Feb 20
Denver District 5 Neighborhood Organizations
Denver is a unique city in promoting greater citizen involvement through organized neighborhood associations. Currently, there are 78 statistical neighborhoods represented by more than 200 registered neighborhood organizations (RNOs), Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) and Homeowner Associations (HOAs).

In its defined geographic area, an RNO will normally address neighborhood quality of life issues - such as traffic, development and zoning, crime, communication and licensing, and promote social activities to enhance residential spirit, developing a sense of community, and encourage resident participation. RNOs meet regularly and many send out newsletters to keep residents informed on neighborhood issues and events.

Get more involved in your community by joining your Registered Neighborhood Organization (RNO). Below is a list of Council District 5 community organizations. You can also find out which RNO you belong to by entering your address or selecting a location on the map.