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Renter’s Guide to Castle Rock, CO
Located midway between Denver and Colorado Springs, Castle Rock is a city in Douglas County, and a suburb of Denver. While recent growth has seen the city expand, and perhaps lose some of its small-town charm, it’s still very much more rural/suburban than urban and offers a mid-size town vibe. Low crime rates and good schools make Castle Rock popular with families, while an excellent location with proximity to numerous high-tech centers make it a popular choice for young professionals.
With a population of 57,274 and an area of 34 sq. meters, Castle Rock is the 17th largest municipality in the State, and it’s far larger than any of the neighboring towns and cities, such as Castle Pines (10,726). However, it’s much smaller than several suburbs closer to Denver proper, such as Aurora, which is around 3 times larger in terms of population and 4 times smaller in terms of area. Compared to Denver itself, Castle Rock is around 10 times smaller in terms of population.
Downtown Denver is about 30 miles north of Castle Rock and can be reached within 40 minutes via Interstate 25, which passes through the middle of the city, providing quick and easy travel. Traveling south down the same freeway will take you 70 miles to Colorado Springs, typically within an hour and a half. Kansas City is around 580 miles east of the city, while Las Vegas is around 775 miles southwest.
With a semi-arid climate, Castle Rock enjoys hot summers, and cold snowy winters, with around 18 inches of rain per year, well under the national average of 36 inches. August is the wettest month, with an average 2.71 inches of rain, while July is typically the hottest month, with highs of around 85°F. December and January can be considered the coldest months, with lows of around 17.8°F. The average annual snowfall is 61.8 inches, which typically falls between October and April, with December and March often seeing the most.
Cost of Living in Castle Rock, CO
Public transit options in Castle Rock are extremely limited, and the vast majority of residents rely on private vehicles to get from A to B, with a gallon of gasoline costing around $2.60. However, the city sponsors a reduced fare taxi voucher program within the city limits for anyone without access to a car.
A meal in an inexpensive restaurant will normally cost between $8 and $15, while a combo meal at a fast food joint will typically be around $7. A 3-course meal for 2 in a mid-range restaurant will generally cost between $40 and $70, while beer will typically be $4.50, and coffee $4.30.
For a standard 915 sq. ft apartment, you can expect to pay and average of $130 per month on basic utilities, such as water, heating, cooling, electricity, and garbage disposal. An internet connection will typically cost an additional $50 — $65.
Average Rent in Castle Rock, CO
- Castle Rock, CO Average Rental Price, February 2020 $1,559 /mo
Castle Rock, CO Apartment Rent Ranges
- > $2,00011%
Castle Rock, CO Rent Trends
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Living in Castle Rock, CO
Castle Rock has low crime rates, high incomes, and good school systems, without the urban feel of a bigger city. Residents can take a look out their windows and still see spectacular rock formations, forests, and trees. It’s located close to a wealth of state parks and offers plenty for outdoor enthusiasts to explore. Additionally, it’s well located for commuters working in the high-tech hubs of north Colorado Springs, and The Denver Tech Center (DTC).
Rapid growth over the past decade has created many opportunities for residents of Castle Rock and made it a more attractive place to live. However, the city’s infrastructure has struggled to keep up, with congestion during rush hours, poorly paved roads, and a lack of parking places in some areas. Younger residents may also find the lack of nightlife difficult to put up with, and most venues close by 10pm.
Things to Do in Castle Rock, CO
Castle Rock is home to 20 parks, 5,800 acres of open space and almost 75 miles of trails, making it the ideal spot for outdoor enthusiasts. A short hike up the iconic city namesake is a must, for spectacular views over town and beyond, while Butterfield Park offers an outdoor pool, an inline skating rink, and plays host to several events throughout the year.
For shopping, the Outlets at Castle Rock offer a wealth of stores, supplying everything from groceries and clothes to musical instruments and pet supplies. In addition to a huge supply of stores, there are also a range of mostly chain restaurants. For boutique stores, antiques, and ma and pa restaurants, head to downtown Castle Rock.
The city has an AMC movie theater for film buffs, and culture vultures will appreciate the fact that there are now 3 theaters in the city; Castle View, The Spotlight Theater, and the Theatre of Dreams, where residents can take in plays, magic shows, and concerts.
Castle Rock also hosts several events throughout the year, such as the Castle Rock Winefest, the Colorado Artfest, and the iconic Starlighting festival. In addition, numerous smaller community events take place throughout the year, including farmers markets, harvest festivals, and ice skating.
Employment & Economy in Castle Rock, CO
With a median household income of $101,122, residents of Castle Rock typically earn well above national and state averages. The most common industry by number of employees is retail trade, which employs 12.2% of the workforce. Professional, scientific and technical services (11.2%) is the second most common industry, while health care and social assistance (10.2%) comes third. The highest paying industries are management of companies and enterprises, mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction, and wholesale trade.
With 4,795 employees, management occupations is the most common job group, followed by sales and related occupations, and office and administrative support roles. The highest paid residents work in computer and mathematical occupations, management occupations, and computer, engineering and science occupations.
Education in Castle Rock, CO
The Douglas County School District serves Castle Rock, and within the city limits, there are a total of 18 public schools, including; 2 high schools, 2 middle schools, 10 elementary schools, as well as 2 charter schools, one magnet school, and one alternative high school.
Castle View High School is the top-rated public high school, ranking as the 11th best public high school in the county, and the 120th best in Colorado. The school scores well above average in terms of college readiness. The Academy Charter School is the top-rated elementary and middle school in the city, accepting students from grades PK through 8. It ranks well in terms of student progress and test scores and continues to rate well above average. The Timber Trail Elementary School is another high-ranking elementary school, with students scoring well above average in tests.
In terms of higher education, Arapahoe Community College (ACC) works in partnership with the Colorado State University (CSU), and the Douglas County School District, to offer a number of degrees and certificates within 3 of ACC's Pathways: Business, Health, and Technology.
Tips for Renting in Castle Rock, CO
When thinking about moving to Castle Rock, there are a few things to consider, especially if you’re moving from out of state. With an elevation of 6,224 feet, it can take some time to acclimatize to the higher altitude. Take it easy when exercising at first, try cutting back by around half, and drink twice as much water. When it comes to alcohol, it’ll hit you harder than at sea level, so keep that in mind when you hit the town.
Commute times from Castle Rock to anywhere further north than the Denver Tech Center can be strenuous and will often take in excess of an hour. The same is true if you plan to commute to Colorado Springs, as the freeway narrows south of Castle Rock. Winter commute times can be extended further when it snows. It’s also worth taking a winter weather driving refresher course if you’re not used to snow and ice.
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