Denver District 5 | July 2020
Councilwoman Amanda Sawyer | District 5
720-337-5555 |
Chief of Staff: JoyAnn Ruscha | Senior Aide: Logan Fry | Aide: Sara Visser
Dear Neighbors,

July 15th will mark my first year in office! From every neighborhood in our district, I have heard a common refrain: traffic safety and infrastructure is a huge concern . From the first day, I've been advocating for traffic safety in our community. Many of these concerns have since been addressed, and others we are still working on. We will continue to ask for more assistance for our District from Denver's Department of Transportation and Infrastructure (DOTI) wherever it is needed.

Our office was planning a comprehensive Town Hall event with DOTI when the COVID stay-at-home order went into effect, and we regret we are unable to hold such an event at this time. Despite the interruption in our plans, we are bringing you this special email update on just a few of the projects we have undertaken in District 5 in the last year. There are more in the works and more that we have requested, and there are some that unfortunately were not

I want to especially thank our partners and constituents in the community who have helped us advocate and secure these important improvements to our neighborhoods. As always, please continue to report any traffic concerns to 311 and to our office, so that we can track requests and help advocate for more resources in District 5. Don't hesitate to reach out to our office with any questions or if there is anything we can do to assist you in any way. By working together, our neighborhoods thrive.


Councilwoman Amanda Sawyer
District 5
Safety Upgrades Coming to 14th & Glencoe
The intersection at 14th and Glencoe continues to be an issue of significant concern in the district, having experienced six large vehicle crashes in the last five months. DOTI staff have conducted a localized safety evaluation. Each police report was evaluated and the primary contributing factor of the crash was identified. Data over the last five years show a variety of causes for the crashes. While speed was a factor in some crashes, the data indicates that the most relevant contributing factor appears to be improper turns onto and from the side streets. See the photo below for specific information. 

DPD has placed a driver feedback sign at the intersection to remind drivers of the speed limit. Additionally, our office has created "slow down" signs, which will be available for distribution throughout the community in mid-July. These are temporary solutions. In the coming months, DOTI staff will be installing more prominent stop signs and stop bars on the side streets, and ensuring trees adjacent to the right-of-way are trimmed properly to allow for proper sight distance of oncoming traffic, which will be a more permanent solution to this issue.
Safety Upgrades Coming to 13th and 14th Avenues
Improvements and upgrades are coming for pedestrian and vehicle safety at several intersection along 13th & 14th Aves, at the following cross streets: Colorado Blvd., Cherry St., Krameria St., Verbena St., and Uinta St.
Construction is planned for this fall. Check this Fact Sheet for more information and we'll provide updates as they become available.
Sidewalks & Safety Upgrades are Coming to Quebec Street
After much study and anticipation, sidewalks are coming on Quebec south of Colfax. In addition, safety upgrades are coming to the intersection of Quebec at 14th Avenue and Colfax. Stay tuned for more information and timelines as this information becomes available.
Stop Light at Alameda Avenue & Newport Street
DOTI has been working alongside Denver Parks & Recreation to move forward with the installation of a stoplight at Alameda & S. Newport, to assist students and families at Denver Academy of Torah and residents of the Winston Downs community. The most recent information our office received from DOTI is that the project has 60% design submitted, is under review, and is expected to be installed in 2021 or early 2022.
ADA Ramp Work and Stoplight Upgrades on Monaco Ave. Corners
In the upcoming months, the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure will begin a right of way project along Monaco Parkway at the intersections of Cedar Avenue, Virginia Avenue and 14 th  Avenue. The intersection project will upgrade traffic signals and make improvements to sidewalks and ADA ramps for enhanced pedestrian and vehicular safety. You may have noiced surveyors and DOTI engineers walking the intersections this spring. Anticipated construction is late summer 2021. For additional information please  email Lisa Lumley , Assistant Director of Real Estate.
Crosswalk and Lighting Enhancements at Tailwind Park - Alton Way & 5th Avenue
DOTI has submitted work orders for additional stop signs and stop bars at Alton Way and 5th Ave. Crosswalk enhancements such as pictured here will be added to existing stop signs on Alton Way. 

DOTI will also be partnering with Excel to upgrade the street lights adjacent to Tailwind Park from older HPS light bulbs to newer and brighter LEDs. These lighting enhancements should brighten the entire neighborhood around Tailwinds Park and hopefully deter some of the late-night Park activity that has resulted in numerous complaints from residents.
Regarding Concerns about Speeding on Uinta Way
According to DOTI: "We recognize that the roadway characteristics and surrounding land uses along Uinta Way may be conducive to elicit speeding vehicles." DOTI staff have ordered speed data be collected as soon as traffic conditions normalize enough - returning to pre-stay-at-home order levels - to provide meaningful information. 

Unfortunately, no treatments can be made in advance of that data collection. Existing data is more than three years old and do not show a speeding issue. We will provide updates as they become available.

The Lowry Pedestrian Safety Committee has reconvened and is actively working in partnership with the Council Office and DOTI to work on community safety issues within the Lowry community. If you have questions or comments, please reach out to Barb DeSarro by clicking this link .
2020 District 5 Repaving Plan
Several roadways in District 5 are set for improvement this year, as indicated on this map. Before work begins, adjacent homes will be notified and 'No Parking' signs will be placed on the street. 

The City asks that residents make every attempt to move their cars for this work to occur - cars left on the street when work begins will be moved, normally within a two-block radius of where the car was parked. Residents who need help locating their cars can call the City’s non-emergency line at 720-913-2000 for assistance. With parking is in high demand given the COVID-19 work from home recommendations, residents will not receive citations if their cars need to be moved, until further notice.

All work is weather-dependent and schedules are subject to change.  Visit this website  for a weekly update and full description of each roadway Treatment Type mentioned on the map's legend.
Enhanced Lighting in East Colfax
Crime and safety are of increasing concern on far East Colfax Ave. and adjacent blocks. At the request of Denver City Council, DOTI has looked into the possibility of brighter neighborhood lighting as a tool to enhance community safety in this area. 

Brighter and more efficient LED streetlights were to be installed recently by Excel Energy along the East Colfax Colfax and adjacent roadways such as Willow and Verbena. DOTI staff have confirmed that these upgrades have been completed; the new lamp heads can be identified by a sticker reading "B LED," which you can see in this photo of a streetlight on Willow at 12th Ave.

Our office has asked the District 2 Police to do a nighttime flyover of the neighborhood and take a top-down photograph of the area so we can get a visual representation of these lighting enhancements. DPD is able to grant our request, and we hope to be able to use this information to pinpoint specific locations where we can make additional specific requests for additional lighting support.
Stoplight at 9+CO is Complete
You may have noticed the new traffic signal recently installed at 8th Avenue and Ash Streets near the new AMC movie theatre. This signal should significantly assist pedestrians in crossing 8th Avenue and ease access into and out of the 9+CO development.
Requests for Left Turn Signals:
6th Avenue & Quebec Street and Holly Street & Leetsdale Drive
A number of community members have requested left hand turn signals at several locations throughout District 5 neighborhoods. In these situations, a comprehensive multi-criteria warrant assessment is conducted to determine where new left-turn signals should be installed, and multiple such requests are assessed in groupings by a consultant on behalf of DOTI. The two most requested left-turn intersections in District 5 have been:
  • Holly & Leetsdale
  • 6th Avenue and Quebec

The 6 th  Ave and Quebec intersection will be assessed in the next grouped request in Fall 2020. The Holly & Leetsdale intersection was assessed in early 2020 and did not meet the criteria for installation of a left turn signal at this time.

Three primary criteria are used in the assessment:
  • The number of crashes linked to left turning vehicle movements
  • The volume of turning vehicles in comparison to the volume of through vehicles at peak period
  • The amount of time (delay) left turning vehicles must wait to get through the signal. 

Crashes alone may warrant signal treatment. If crashes do not meet the threshold, volumes are evaluated. If volumes to do not meet the threshold, delay factors are also evaluated. Unfortunately, the Holly & Leetsdale intersection did not meet any of the three criteria; however our office will request that this be assessed again in two years when the senior living facility opens at that intersection.
Storm Drain Project Coming to South Hilltop in Winter 2020
DOTI will begin installing a storm drain on East Dakota Ave. between Holly and Jersey St. this winter to reduce localized nuisance flooding in the alleyways. Community outreach and information sessions will be done when more information is available. Stay tuned for more information.

Because of this project, no safety enhancements of upgrades have been identified for the stretch of S. Jersey street between Alameda and Leetsdale. We know that this is an area of concern for a number of our residents due to the number of cut-throughs on that street. However, DOTI will not install safety upgrades that will be removed as the result of another project, so we have been informed that there will be no improvements on S. Jersey at this time.
If You Have Feedback on the Leetsdale Paving Project....
Our office has fielded a number of questions about the repaving plan for Leetsdale Drive. Because the road is part of Colorado State Highway 83, the work is being designed by and overseen by the Colorado Department of Transportation, not the City of Denver. The concrete sidewalk and curb ramp work, and roadway re-striping are meant to enhance safety based on the number of accidents that have occurred along that stretch of the highway.

As crews resurface eastbound Leetsdale Drive, traffic will be shifted into the westbound lanes, with one lane open in each direction. This traffic pattern will be repeated for westbound resurfacing, and traffic will shift into the eastbound lanes, with one lane open in each direction.

Motorists should expect:
  • Single lane closures during work hours.
  • Daytime lane closure hours for concrete work Monday through Friday, 9am-3pm
  • Nighttime lane closure hours for resurfacing work Sunday night through Friday morning - northbound 8:00pm-6:00am; southbound 7:00pm-6:00am

There will be no speed reductions or oversize/overweight restrictions.

 If you'd like to give feedback on the project, click here . For more information about the project scope, including schedule and traffic impacts, visit the CDOT website or call
Mayfair Street Sweeping Sign Installation Delayed Until 2021
Prior to Councilwoman Sawyer's time in office, the District 5 Council office, in conjunction with Denver Public Works and Mayfair Neighbors Inc., determined that several areas of Mayfair were missing street sweeping signs and instituted a plan to replace them accordingly. Street sweeping sign installation in the first section of the neighborhood was completed in early 2019.

DOTI plans to push to next year installation of the remainder of planned street sweeping signs in Mayfair. Phases 2 and 3 will be completed in 2021. Click here  to sign up for street sweeping alerts.
Parking Enforcement Updates
On June 1, Denver’s Department of Transportation and Infrastructure (DOTI) resumed some - but not all - parking enforcement activities that were suspended in March due to the city’s response to COVID-19 and the Stay at Home order. For more information and updates, click here.

Beginning on June 1 and until further notice:
  • Downtown-area parking meters will be turned on and operational between the hours of 8 a.m. and 10 p.m. People utilizing a metered parking space downtown must pay the meter and adhere to posted time limits between those hours. Downtown meters will be free from 10 p.m. to 8 a.m.

  • Parking meters outside of the Downtown area will be turned back on and will operate at the price and time limits posted on the meters. People utilizing meters located outside of downtown should pay the meter and adhere to posted time limits. 

  • Enforcement of time-limited, non-metered parking spaces and residential parking programs will resume. For residents who are eligible for residential parking permits click here to check your eligibility. Existing permit holders are encouraged to renew expired permits. For those who are eligible for residential parking permits but who are unable to provide necessary documentation due to COVID-19, DOTI can issue 90-day temporary permits via an online application. 

Beginning July 1 and until further notice: 
  • Enforcement of posted parking restrictions for street sweeping will resume. Cars that are not moved on posted street sweeping days will be ticketed. 

  • Enforcement of 72-hour parking limits will resume. Residents should move vehicles parked in one spot after 72 hours. 

DOTI will not enforce the following until further notice: 
  • Large vehicle parking: residents can park trucks and other vehicles more than 22’ in length on the street in non-residential areas 
  • School bus loading zones restrictions 
  • Booting 
  • Street paving: Residents are asked to make every attempt to move their cars so that this work can occur. Cars left on the street when work begins will be moved, normally within a two-block radius of where the car was parked. For help locating moved cars, call the City’s non-emergency line at 720.913.2000.