Centennial, Colorado
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Centennial, Colorado
Centennial, Colorado
City of Centennial[1]
Centennial Civic Center located on East Arapahoe Road
Centennial Civic Center located on East Arapahoe Road
Flag of Centennial, Colorado
Spirit of the Past
Location of the City of Centennial in Arapahoe County, Colorado.
Location of the City of Centennial in
Centennial is located in the United States
Location of the City of Centennial in the
Coordinates: 39°35?26?N 104°52?09?W / 39.590568°N 104.869118°W / 39.590568; -104.869118Coordinates: 39°35?26?N 104°52?09?W / 39.590568°N 104.869118°W / 39.590568; -104.869118[3]
Country United States
State Colorado
CountyArapahoe County[2]
 o TypeHome rule municipality[1]
 o MayorStephanie Piko
 o Total29.867 sq mi (77.355 km2)
 o Land29.721 sq mi (76.976 km2)
 o Water0.146 sq mi (0.379 km2)
Elevation5,830 ft (1,777 m)
 o Total108,418
 o Rank11th in Colorado
288th in the United States
 o Density3,648/sq mi (1,409/km2)
 o Metro
2,963,821 (19th)
 o CSA
3,623,560 (17th)
 o Front Range
Time zoneUTC-07:00 (MST)
UTC-06:00 (MDT)
ZIP Codes[6]
80015-80016, 80111-80112, 80121-80122,
80161 (PO Box)
Area code(s)Both 303 and 720
FIPS code08-12815
11th most populous Colorado city

The City of Centennial is a home rule municipality located in Arapahoe County, Colorado, United States.[1] The city population was 108,418 at the 2020 United States Census, making Centennial the 11th most populous municipality in Colorado.[4] Centennial is a part of the Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, CO Metropolitan Statistical Area and the Front Range Urban Corridor.


The City of Centennial was formed on February 7, 2001, from portions of unincorporated Arapahoe County, including the former Castlewood and Southglenn census-designated places (CDPs).[7] The citizens of the area had voted to incorporate on September 12, 2000, choosing Centennial as the official name during the vote. The name reflects Colorado's admission to the Union as the 38th state in 1876, the centennial year of the United States Declaration of Independence.[8] The state of Colorado is nicknamed the "Centennial State".[8]

Incorporation was approved by 77% of the voters, and the population of the area at over 100,000 made it the largest incorporation in U.S. history as of its creation. The city was incorporated in large part to prevent further annexations of unincorporated areas by the city of Greenwood Village in an attempt to improve its tax base.[] The taxes generated from businesses in unincorporated portions of Arapahoe County funded the majority of the county's services, including road work. A number of court cases[specify] eventually established the right of incorporation to take precedence over the right of annexation.[]

The city was incorporated on a promise to keep city taxes at 1%. (One of the campaigns against incorporation appealed to voters to maintain the 3.8% sales tax of the unincorporated county.) According to the City of Centennial website, the current sales tax rate is two-and-a-half times the promised rate, at 2.5%.

Since the city is relatively new, some people in the Denver-Aurora metropolitan area do not yet recognize the area by the name "Centennial", especially since neighboring Aurora, Englewood and Littleton are the default place names assigned by the United States Postal Service for ZIP codes serving Centennial. Thus, mailing addresses designated as "Aurora", "Englewood" or "Littleton" may actually be located in Centennial. This causes considerable confusion, as Centennial and Englewood do not even share a boundary, while some portions of Centennial are surrounded by Aurora and vice versa.

In 2008, Centennial voters approved a referendum by approximately a 2-to-1 margin making Centennial a home rule city.[9]

Centennial Airport, formerly Arapahoe County Airport, lies adjacent to Centennial, but is located in unincorporated Arapahoe County. The airport is not named after the city, as it predates the city by over 30 years.


Centennial is roughly divided in half by Interstate 25, with most of its business and entertainment centers lying west of the highway. The city's boundaries are highly irregular and evocative of a gerrymander, particularly the overwhelmingly residential eastern portions of the city, which appear with Foxfield, portions of Aurora, and unincorporated areas as a distorted checkerboard on the city's map.[10]

Centennial has many hills, gullies and ravines, and its open spaces are usually accompanied by recreational trails and parks, including Dry Creek Dam, DeKoevend Park, the High line Canal Trail, Willow Creek Trail, as well as Big Dry Creek and Little Dry Creek Trails. Centennial hosts most native wildlife and is a good reflection of Colorado's front range ecosystem. Centennial has seen a boost in coyote populations in recent years, leading to resident education on how to deter coyotes from eating family pets.[11]

Centennial is located at 39°35'47" North, 104°50'38" West (39.5963, -104.8439).[12]

At the 2020 United States Census, the city had a total area of 19,115 acres (77.355 km2) including 94 acres (0.379 km2) of water.[4]


The city is approximately composed of 87.4% White, 4.8% Hispanic or Latino, 3.6% Asian, 2.4% African American, 0.4% Native American, and 0.3% from other races.

The median age is 37.2 years, in comparison to the 35.3-year national average. For every 100 females, there are 98 males.


National CineMedia and United Launch Alliance are among the companies based in Centennial. Blackjack Pizza was headquartered in Centennial.[13]

Top employers

According to Centennial's 2017 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report,[14] the top employers in the city are:


Most of Centennial is within the territory of the Cherry Creek Public Schools while the western portion of the city in the territory of Littleton Public Schools.[15] Centennial is also served by a few private schools.

Public High Schools

Public Middle Schools

  • Campus Middle School (located outside the city in neighboring Greenwood Village)
  • Cherry Creek Academy Charter (Elementary and Middle--6-8)
  • Euclid Middle School
  • Isaac Newton Middle School
  • Laredo Middle School (located outside the city in neighboring Aurora)
  • John Wesley Powell Middle School
  • West Middle School (located outside the city)
  • Horizon Middle School (located outside the city in neighboring Aurora)

Public Elementary Schools - West Centennial

  • Ames Elementary School (closed at the end of 2008/2009 school year)
  • Franklin Elementary School
  • Highland Elementary School
  • Hopkins Elementary School
  • Lenski Elementary School
  • Peabody Elementary School
  • Sandburg Elementary School
  • Twain Elementary School
  • Dry Creek Elementary School
  • Heritage Elementary School
  • Homestead Elementary School
  • Walnut Hills Community Elementary School
  • Willow Creek Elementary School
  • Greenwood Elementary School (located outside the city)

Public Elementary Schools - East Centennial

  • Cherry Creek Academy Charter (K-8)
  • Creekside Elementary School
  • Peakview Elementary School
  • Timberline Elementary School
  • Indian Ridge Elementary School
  • Trails West Elementary School
  • Buffalo Trail Elementary School (located outside the city in neighboring Aurora)

Private Elementary and Middle Schools

  • St. Thomas More Parish School
  • Highlands Baptist Academy
  • Shepherd of the Hills Christian School
  • Centennial Christian Academy
  • C.A.R.E. Middle School



Cathy Noon, mayor, signs the Buckley Air Force Base Partnership Steering Group charter on March 31, 2015.

The city is governed under the council-manager form of government[16] which limits the power of the city to levy and collect taxes. The city council has eight members. The Mayor and Council Members are all part-time officials who hold other full-time jobs.

City of Centennial Officials
Office Incumbent
Mayor Stephanie Piko
Council Members, District I Kathy Turley Candace Moon
Council Members, District II Carrie Penaloza Tammy Mauer
Council Members, District III Ken Lucas Mike Sutherland
Council Members, District IV Ron Weidman Marlo Alston
City Clerk Barb Setterlind
City Manager Matt Sturgeon

Points of interest

  • International Headquarters for Gamma Phi Beta sorority are located in Centennial. Gamma Phi Beta was the first women's organization to use the term "sorority".
  • Centennial was chosen in 2008 as the site of the first IKEA store in Colorado.[17] The IKEA Centennial location opened on July 27, 2011. It is the second-largest IKEA store in the United States.[18] IKEA Centennial was awarded the Project of the Year in 2011 by the City of Centennial.[19]

Notable people

Notable individuals who were born in or have lived in Centennial include:

Surrounding municipalities

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e "Active Colorado Municipalities". State of Colorado, Colorado Department of Local Affairs, Division of Local Government. Retrieved 2021.
  2. ^ "Colorado Counties". State of Colorado, Colorado Department of Local Affairs, Division of Local Government. Retrieved 2021.
  3. ^ "2014 U.S. Gazetteer Files: Places". United States Census Bureau. July 1, 2014. Retrieved 2015.
  4. ^ a b c d "Decennial Census P.L. 94-171 Redistricting Data". United States Census Bureau, United States Department of Commerce. August 12, 2021. Retrieved 2021.
  5. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved .
  6. ^ "ZIP Code Lookup". United States Postal Service. Archived from the original (JavaScript/HTML) on September 3, 2007. Retrieved 2007.
  7. ^ Wallace, Susan. "Centennial off to fast start". Denver Post. Retrieved 2020.
  8. ^ a b "Profile for Centennial, Colorado, CO". ePodunk. Retrieved .
  9. ^ Illescas, Carlos (June 11, 2008). "Centennial goes home rule". Denver Post.
  10. ^ "Centennial Map". open-centennial.opendata.arcgis.com. Retrieved .
  11. ^ "CentennialColorado.com redirects to CentennialCo.gov". Centennialcolorado.com. Archived from the original on 13 December 2010. Retrieved 2017.
  12. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved .
  13. ^ Home page. Blackjack Pizza. September 26, 2001. Retrieved on October 18, 2018. "9137 E Mineral Cr - Suite 100 Englewood CO 80112"
  14. ^ "Centennial, Colorado CAFR" (PDF). centennialco.gov. Retrieved 2019.
  15. ^ "City of Centennial Street Map - School Districts." (Archive) City of Centennial. Retrieved on December 13, 2013.
  16. ^ "City Manager's Office - City of Centennial". Centennialco.gov. Retrieved 2017.
  17. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2008-09-13. Retrieved .CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  18. ^ "IKEA Centennial Home Furnishings - IKEA". Ikea.com. Retrieved 2017.
  19. ^ [1]
  20. ^ "Sean Tufts Stats, News and Video - LB".
  21. ^ "Amy Barczuk". Boston Breakers. Archived from the original on 2016-03-17. Retrieved .
  22. ^ "Madisen Beaty - Biography". IMDb. Retrieved .
  23. ^ "Kevin Gausman". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved .
  24. ^ Associated Press (2010-09-29). "Sheriff: Broncos WR Kenny McKinley Found Dead". NPR. Archived from the original on September 21, 2010. Retrieved .
  25. ^ Goldstein, Richard (2007-11-10). "George Ratterman, Football Star and Sheriff, Dies at 80". The New York Times. Retrieved .
  26. ^ "Spencer Swalm's Biography". Vote Smart. Retrieved .
  27. ^ "Jack Tate's Biography". Vote Smart. Retrieved .
  28. ^ "Ken Tribbett". Major League Soccer. Retrieved .
  29. ^ https://www.linkedin.com/in/tom-costello-3b5b954
  30. ^ "Student shooting suspect was targeting teacher, officials say".

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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