FYI 2016: West Side (including Old Colorado City, Gold Hill Mesa)
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The Gold Hill Mesa residential development Tuesday, June 23, 2015. Photo by Mark Reis, The Gazette

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History abounds on the west side of Colorado Springs. Central is what, in 1859, was founded as Colorado City and was, for at least five days, the first territorial capital of Colorado. Built along the railway and beside roads leading from the Pikes Peak or Bust gold-mining boom areas, it was integral to that era for processing the ore. As part of this history, it had bars and ladies of the night, and there are stories to be told at the Old Colorado City Historical Society.

Old Colorado City, as it is known now, is part of Colorado Springs and home to century-old homes, a quaint historic district, one of the rare Carnegie Libraries, shops, businesses, restaurants and community events year-round.

Old-timers mix with newcomers, drawn to the distinctive architecture from different eras and a successful urban renewal program.

Gold Hill Mesa, which had a vital part in local mining boom history, has been transformed into a many-faceted hilltop community. As new homes and areas are developed, the tall mill smokestack still stands as a beacon. Land used for ore processing has been recycled over several years to make way for new neighborhoods. There’s a central community center where neighbors gather, and large parks and major hiking trails are nearby.

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