At the dawn of the twentieth century, settlers and ranchers were drawn to Broomfield area because of its clean air, expansive vistas, and country charm. These same qualities inspired suburban pioneers in the 1950s to create a unique development on this land, featuring streets curved to the rolling contours of Broomfield Heights. Broomfield’s story reveals how Colorado’s first Master Planned Community — the city by the turnpike — embodied the new spirit of the American dream.
In 2010, the City and County of Broomfield approached HaveyPro about making a short documentary to commemorate their 50th anniversary as a municipality. In addition to archival photos from the Library of Congress and the Western History Collection at the Denver Public Library, we received some amazing photos directly from residents of Broomfield, as well as footage from the city and the Colorado Department of Transportation. We filmed interviews with historians, community leaders, and long-time residents; including one of the foremost historians on the American West, Patty Limerick. One touching story from the movie about Shep the turnpike dog, inspired Charlotte Havey to write a children’s book on the subject.
Our intention with this documentary was to tell the story of the development of Broomfield in a way that made it interesting and engaging in a broader national context, while at the same time giving Broomfield residents a sense of pride in what their community has achieved. The film premiered for Broomfield’s 50th anniversary in July of 2011, and screened at local events, on Rocky Mountain PBS and the Broomfield municipal channel.