The Golden Chamber and Paving City Streets

Golden’s Chamber of Commerce was formed in 1920, to campaign for civic improvements that would benefit Golden business. Their main project for the first several years of their existence was bringing a paved road into downtown Golden. At the beginning of 1920, the “cement road” from Denver ended at 24th Street, which was the southern limit of Golden. North of that point, the roads became dirt.

As the Colorado Transcript remarked, “Golden wants this badly needed improvement. A 365 days a year thoroughfare minus chuck holes, bumps, dust and mud holes will do more to place Golden in the ranks of the progressive up-to-date cities of the state than any other constructive item.”

There were many opinions as to which route the proposed paved road should follow to get into downtown. Some proposed that Washington should be extended out to 24th Street. Others thought that East Street should be paved, while others favored Ford Street. Whichever one was chosen would become the main thoroughfare into town. In the end, Ford Street was chosen, so that was our first paved north-south road. 12th and 14th Streets were also paved, to bring people from Ford Street over to Washington Avenue. Interestingly, the cost of paving the streets was borne by the property owners along the route.

This first project started a paving movement, and several other principle streets in Golden were paved throughout the 1920s. Not surprisingly, the movement to pave Golden’s streets slowed during the Depression, and first-time paving was still happening well into the 1950s.

The Golden Transcript (originally called the Colorado Transcript) has been publishing since 1866. The Golden History Museum has been working on digitizing the old issues, and they’re currently up to October of 1965. You’ll find old Transcripts online at

Return to Random Finds from the Golden Transcript.