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What to Know Before Moving to Centennial CO 🏢🌲 | What Living in Centennial CO Is Like

Just outside Denver you’ll find the beautiful city of Centennial, one of the most popular suburbs for families and outdoor enthusiasts. Centennial is known for its fantastic parks and great schools. It’s also one of the youngest cities in Colorado and celebrated its 20-year anniversary in 2021.

Are you thinking about moving to Centennial, Colorado? Here’s what you’ll love about this fun suburb!

Where Is Centennial, CO?

Centennial, Colorado, is nestled in the southeastern part of the Denver metropolitan area in Arapahoe County. It's just 16 miles from Centennial Colorado to Denver and 25 miles from Centennial to the Denver airport. It's one of the largest inner suburbs of Denver.

The city of Centennial shares its borders with several other communities, including Aurora and a small part of Denver to the north and east, Englewood and Greenwood Village to the west, and Littleton, Lone Tree, and Highlands Ranch to the south.

Centennial is easily accessible via several major highways, particularly Interstate 25, which runs north-south through the city, and Highway 470, which runs along the southern border. Centennial transportation is made even easier with the region’s light rail service and the Dry Creek station in the city. Getting from Dry Creek to Denver Union Station takes just 35 minutes.

Centennial is nestled against the large Cherry Creek State Park, with the Rocky Mountains serving as a dramatic backdrop to the west, providing stunning views and a sense of the magnificent natural beauty Colorado is famous for.

Many mailing addresses in Centennial are designated as Littleton, Englewood, or Aurora based on default names assigned by the USPS to zip codes in Centennial.

Centennial Colorado Population & Demographics

The population of Centennial, CO, is 108,418 according to the 2020 census, up about 8% from the 2010 population of 100,377. It’s part of the Front Range Urban Corridor and the Denver-Aurora-Lakewood metro area. The metro population is 2.96 million while the Front Range is home to 5.06 million people. There are 3,648 people per square mile living in Centennial, Colorado.

Centennial is the 11th largest city in Colorado and the 7th largest municipality in Greater Denver.

Additional Centennial demographics:

  • Median household income: $126,224 (metro: $98,975)
  • Median age: 42.7 years (metro: 37.3 years)
  • Sex ratio: 51% female to 49% male
  • Homeownership rate: 81% (metro: 65%)
  • Educational attainment: 66% bachelor’s degree or higher (metro: 49%)
  • Senior population: 21% (metro: 14%)
  • Foreign-born population: 10.5% (metro: 12%)
  • Veteran population: 7.3% (metro: 6.3%)

Centennial, Colorado, isn’t as diverse as many cities in the metro area. The racial and ethnic composition is 81.5% White (76.9% non-Hispanic), 9.1% Hispanic, 6.3% Asian, 2.4% Black or African American, 0.3% Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander, and 7.6% two or more races.

Cost of Living in Centennial CO

The Centennial CO cost of living is about 24% higher than the national average and a bit higher than average for Colorado. While groceries and utilities are lower than average, housing is much more expensive than the national average.

The median home price in Centennial is $583,500, down 1% year-over-year. You’ll pay a median $268 per square foot. The median price for a single-family home is $650,000 while condos have a median price of $388,000. You can explore homes for sale in Centennial CO to see how far your budget gets you.

Planning to rent after moving to Centennial? The average rent in Centennial is $2,050 according to Rentcafe. By comparison, the national average rent is $1,715. Of course, rent varies by neighborhood.

In the most expensive neighborhoods like Cherry Knolls, Heritage Greens, and Southglenn, the average rent is $2,200. Neighborhoods like Willow Creek and Valley Country Club have rent close to the city’s average. The most affordable Centennial neighborhoods for renters include Heritage Village, Cherry Hills, and Southwood Park.

Best Centennial Neighborhoods

Ready to decide where you will be living in Centennial? The city boasts dozens of beautiful neighborhoods for all lifestyles, from family-friendly master-planned communities to urban and walkable neighborhoods and retirement communities. Here are just a few of the best neighborhoods in Centennial CO.

Willow Creek

Willow Creek stands out for its picturesque landscapes and well-maintained properties. Recognized for its strong community vibe, it boasts a variety of outdoor amenities such as parks, walking trails, and swimming pools. Families are particularly drawn to this area due to its top-rated schools, great amenities, and active homeowners associations that frequently organize community events. Several shopping centers also border it.

You'll find homes mostly built in the mid-1970s with four quadrants. Willow Creek I, II, and III share the same builder. Willow Creek I has a small number of patio homes. In Willow Creek II and III, you'll find larger ranch homes with brick exteriors and some townhomes. Willow Creek West, the final quadrant, is the only one without an HOA. Depending on the subdivision, you can expect home prices to range from the $400s to more than $1 million. The sprawling development also has a condo community called Dry Creek Crossing with prices in the $400s.

Southglenn

Southglenn offers a perfect blend of quiet residential streets and commercial convenience. This neighborhood is popular with homebuyers who want to be close to shopping, dining, entertainment, and downtown Denver. The highlight of the neighborhood is its proximity to the Streets at SouthGlenn shopping center.

Southglenn is separated from the rest of the city with wooded areas. There's a wide range of housing options including Tudor-style homes, brick ranch homes, large colonial homes, and affordable condos. Prices range from the $400s to more than $800,000 depending on the area.

Heritage Greens

Heritage Greens is one of the most desirable neighborhoods in Centennial for families. This close-knit subdivision of more than 575 homes boasts a swim team, a 25-meter, six-lane pool with zero entry, four tennis courts, regular events for residents, and other great amenities. It’s also within the Littleton Public Schools district and served by Arapahoe High.

Centennial Weather & Climate

The Centennial, Colorado, climate is semi-arid with four distinct seasons. Summers in Centennial are warm and mostly dry, with an average high in July around 88°F (31°C). Winters are cold and snowy. January is the coldest month, with average lows around 17°F (-8°C). Make sure you're ready for winter in Centennial: the city has an average annual snowfall of 73 inches per year! You'll get far less rain than the national average, though: just 18 inches of annual rainfall is typical.

The best time to visit Centennial, CO is June or August and September to enjoy the pleasant, mild weather in early or late summer and the start of fall. You'll avoid the most intense heat and the heavy snowfall.

Things to Do in Centennial Colorado

From sports and outdoor recreation to shopping and cultural destinations, there are endless things to do in Centennial CO for all ages. The young city is a top shopping destination with major malls like The Streets at SouthGlenn, a major mixed-use development anchored by Regal SouthGlenn theater, and Cornerstar mall at Routes 88 and 83 anchored by AMC Arapahoe Crossing 16.

Centennial Colorado is home to award-winning parks and family-friendly amenities ranging from golf courses and splash pads to fantastic new rec centers and museums.

Here’s a look at some of the top attractions in the city. For more ideas of things to do in Centennial Colorado, check out the Centennial events calendar.

Centennial Center Park

One of the largest and most visited parks in Centennial CO, Centennial Center Park covers 11 acres with an amphitheater, massive kids splash pad and playground area, and nature areas to explore.

Centennial Center Park, 13050 E Peakview Ave, Centennial, CO 80112 (303) 325-8000

 

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The Trails Recreation Center

Built in 2004, The Trails Recreation Center is a state-of-the-art community center operated by the Trails Park and Recreation District. The 78,000-square-foot facility offers:

  • Fitness classes like yoga and Zumba
  • Personal training
  • Rock climbing wall
  • Cycling studio
  • Aerobics room
  • Running track
  • Advanced fitness center with free weights
  • Leisure and lap pools
  • Lazy river
  • Sauna, steam room, and hot tub
  • Skatepark
  • Pottery, art, and line dancing lessons
  • Volleyball, racquetball, basketball, and pickleball courts

Whenever you’re wondering what to do in Centennial Colorado, a visit to the Trails Recreation Center is the answer, with programs and classes for all ages.

The Trails Recreation Center, 16799 E Lake Ave, Centennial, CO 80016 (303) 269-8400

Topgolf Denver – Centennial

Topgolf’s Centennial location serves the Denver metro area as the top golf entertainment destination. It combines a high-tech driving range with a lounge and fun games that appeal to golfers of all levels – even beginners. There are 102 climate-controlled golf bays with 34 on each floor overlooking a 215-yard outfield.

Topgolf, 10601 E Easter Ave, Centennial, CO 80112 (720) 880-3151

Other attractions in Centennial, Colorado:

While living in Centennial CO, you’ll be served by several Centennial park and recreation districts: Arapahoe County Recreation District, South Suburban Parks and Recreation District, Smoky Hill Metro District, and the Trails Park and Recreation District. That doesn’t include the state and regional parks in the area, like the Cherry Creek Valley Ecological Park!

Residents can use Arapahoe Libraries branches throughout the county for free with four branches in the City of Centennial.

Best Restaurants in Centennial Colorado

Here are just a few of the top Centennial CO restaurants and grills you’ll want to check out after moving to the area. Like the rest of the Denver metro area, craft beer is a big thing in Centennial; you’ll find a great selection at many restaurants, bars, and grills in the city.

ViewHouse

This popular bar and grill is a great destination for brunch, sports, and outdoor dining with great views and a large beer selection.

ViewHouse, 7101 S Clinton St, Centennial, CO 80112 (303) 790-8440

Dog Haus

One of the best places to eat in Centennial, Dog Haus is a casual spot for gourmet hot dogs, burgers, and craft beer. They’re known for their creative menu!

Dog Haus, 12023 E Arapahoe Rd #120, Centennial, CO 80112 (720) 330-0823

2 Penguins Tap and Grill

2 Penguins is a bustling weekend destination for patio dining, local craft beer, and fantastic pub fare. Service is always friendly; you’ll definitely be back!

2 Penguins Tap and Grill, 13065 E Briarwood Ave, Centennial, CO 80112 (303) 792-0310

Jobs in Centennial CO

The young city of Centennial offers a thriving economy with many top industries like leisure and hospitality, retail, education, healthcare, construction, professional services, and financial services. In 2022, there were more than 64,000 jobs in Centennial CO. Professional and business services alone accounted for over 16,000 jobs.

Major employers in Centennial include:

  • Comcast
  • Arrow Electronics (Fortune 500 electrical components provider headquartered in Centennial)
  • United Healthcare
  • United Launch Alliance (aerospace manufacturer and defense contractor)
  • OppenheimerFunds (global asset manager)
  • Nordstrom Bank
  • Sierra Nevada Corporation
  • Travelers Indemnity Company
  • RingCentral (provider of cloud-based communication software)
  • Standard & Poor’s
  • SEAKR Engineering, a Raytheon company
  • AlloSource (one of the nation’s largest human tissue providers)
  • National CineMedia (cinema advertising)

According to Payscale, the average salary in Centennial is $80,000 per year or $24.01 per hour.

Ready to explore career opportunities before moving to Centennial? You can start your search for jobs in Centennial CO on Indeed and check out City of Centennial jobs.

Centennial Schools – Public & Private Schools in Centennial Colorado

After moving to Centennial, Colorado, families are served mostly by Cherry Creek Public Schools. The western section of the city is served by Littleton Public Schools.

Within the Cherry Creek school district, Centennial is served by the following high schools:

  • Cherry Creek High School, one of the top 10 high schools in the Denver metro area and #16 in Colorado
  • Grandview High School
  • Smoky Hill High School
  • Eaglecrest High School

The westernmost part of the city falls under the Littleton district. This area is mostly served by Arapahoe High School, but north of E Arapahoe Rd and west of S Holly St is served by Littleton High School. Arapahoe High is ranked #17 in the Denver area and #33 among Colorado high schools.

There are several highly rated charter schools in Centennial, including Heritage Heights Academy (K-8) and Colorado SKIES Academy (6-8), which is located at the Centennial Airport for kids with an interest in an aviation career. Ascent Classical Academy of Douglas County (ACADC) is a classical charter school just outside Centennial.

There are a handful of private schools in Centennial, including:

  • Anastasis Academy (K-8), a Reggio Emilia Christian school
  • Ambleside School of Colorado
  • St. Mary’s Academy in neighboring Englewood
  • St. Thomas More Parish School in Englewood
  • Our Lady of Loreto School in Foxfield
  • Regis Jesuit High School in Aurora

For higher education, families can turn to Arapahoe Community College in Littleton, as well as numerous universities and colleges in Denver.

Centennial Statistics & Information

  • County: Arapahoe
  • Area: 29,867 square miles
  • Centennial zip codes: 80015, 80016, 80111, 80112, 80121, 80121, and 80161
  • Centennial area codes: 303, 720, and 983
  • Centennial CO elevation: 5,830 feet
  • Time zone: Mountain Time (UTC-7)
  • Closest airport to Centennial: Centennial Airport

Centennial Colorado Map

Ready for full-time Centennial living? Homegrown Moving & Storage is here to make your moving day as stress-free as possible. Call our full-service Centennial movers today at (303) 587-6200 to get started with a free, personalized moving quote.

Toby Martinez
Toby and all of our staff are Colorado natives, hence the name Homegrown Moving and Storage Company. Toby has been active in the Denver Metro business community for over 20 years. He has been in the moving industry since 2010 and brings great experience to the daily operations of this 5 star rated local moving company. He and the Homegrown Moving and Storage Company team are committed to offering outstanding service at a reasonable cost. As Denver has grown dramatically over the past several years, so have our moving services and capabilities in order to keep up with the changes of our city. We hope to speak with you soon about how our team can help meet your moving needs here in Colorado.
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