Residents of Denver’s Stapleton neighborhood will have nine options to choose from as the community ditches its racially-fraught name.
Stapleton United Neighbors, the registered neighborhood organization, has opened an online poll to accept residents’ votes until July 18 at 2 p.m. Voters will need to submit their name and address for verification, but their selections will be confidential.
The names include Central Park, Concourse, Meadowlark, Mosley, Park Central, Peterson, Randolph, Skyview and Tailwinds. The Denver Post notes that some names are aviation-related, in reference to the area’s history as an airport, and others refer to geography or to past Black and Indigenous Denver residents.
The current neighborhood name honors former Denver Mayor Benjamin F. Stapleton, who first entered office in 1923 and left it in 1947, although not all five terms were consecutive. Stapleton was a member of and initially relied upon the Ku Klux Klan for electoral support.
The neighborhood organization wrote that they received a total of 331 name suggestions. “[W]e expect 3 waves of votes (one per week for the remainder of July),” explained SUN. “In the first round next week, each person will be able to rank three of the nine names. We will then add votes across names by assigning 3 points for a 1st choice, 2 points for a 2nd choice and 1 point for a 3rd choice. Fewer names will then be returned back to the community for the 2nd round of voting.”
Stapleton residents last year voted against renaming the neighborhood, but the recent racial justice protests following the Minneapolis police killing of George Floyd have prompted a reconsideration.