Endangered Places
Historic Medians

Wood, Cascade, Nevada, Wahsatch, Willamette, Platte, & Kiowa Avenues
Circa: 1905

Anyone who drives to or through downtown Colorado Springs is familiar with our historic medians and side parking strips. They are an integral part of the development of the City of Colorado Springs which its founder, General William Jackson Palmer, envisioned as a place of beauty and refinement.

The median’s character and uniqueness are attributable to their mature vegetation and Victorian era landscaping. The landscaped medians, along with uniform setbacks, are an important unifying element in the northern neighborhoods. They also are a beautiful remnant of a time when General Palmer’s vision for a garden city reined supreme.
The medians are a remaining legacy of the commitment of our early residents who raised the funds to bring Charles Mulford Robinson, noted “Good Roads” expert and City Beautiful fame, to Colorado Springs to design the layout of the streets and to enhance them with the center landscaped median and landscaped parking strips along the edges.
Today the medians and side parking strips are an endangered historical resource. The danger comes from the continued erosion and defacement that is being done to accommodate current and future traffic with no concept of community, pedestrian traffic or context sensitive design.

The HPA continues to monitor the actions of our City Traffic Engineers and lobbies against the continued destruction of the historic downtown landscaping. The HPA advocates the restoration of the existing medians and parkings and the completion of the C.M. Robinson Plan for Colorado Springs. Click here to read the context of the 1905 Gazette article in which the complete plan was presented.