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Boulder County, Colorado

Boulder County, Colorado
Map of Colorado highlighting Boulder County
Location in the state of Colorado
Map of the United States highlighting Colorado
Colorado's location in the U.S.
Founded November 1, 1861
Named for large granite boulders in area
Seat Boulder
Largest city Boulder
 • Total 740 sq mi (1,917 km2)
 • Land 726 sq mi (1,880 km2)
 • Water 14 sq mi (36 km2), 1.9%
Population (est.)
 • (2014) 313,333
 • Density 391/sq mi (151/km²)
Congressional districts 2nd, 4th
Time zone Mountain: UTC-7/-6
Website .org.bouldercountywww

Boulder County is one of the 64 counties of the U.S. state of Colorado of the United States. As of the 2010 census, the population was 294,567.[1] The most populous municipality in the county and the county seat is Boulder.[2]

Boulder County comprises the Boulder, CO Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is included in the Denver-Aurora, CO Combined Statistical Area.[3]


  • History 1
  • Geography 2
    • Adjacent counties 2.1
    • National protected areas 2.2
    • State protected area 2.3
    • Scenic trails and byways 2.4
    • Historic district 2.5
  • Demographics 3
  • Government 4
    • Elected officials 4.1
  • Politics 5
  • Local courts 6
  • Communities 7
    • Cities 7.1
    • Towns 7.2
    • Census-designated places 7.3
    • Unincorporated communities 7.4
  • See also 8
  • References 9
  • External links 10


Boulder County was one of the original 17 counties created by the Territory of Colorado on November 1, 1861. The county was named for Boulder City and Boulder Creek, so named because of the abundance of boulders in the area. Boulder County retains essentially the same borders as in 1861, although a 27.5 square miles (71.2 km2) of its southeastern corner and its approximate population of 40,000 became part of the City and County of Broomfield in 2001.


Boulder and the mountains to the west of the city

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 740 square miles (1,900 km2), of which 726 square miles (1,880 km2) is land and 14 square miles (36 km2) (1.9%) is water.[4]

Adjacent counties

National protected areas

Rocky Mountain National Park is in Boulder County, Larimer County, and Grand County. Longs Peak, the park's highest summit at 4,345 meters (14,255 feet) elevation, is located in Boulder County.

State protected area

Scenic trails and byways

Historic district


As of the census[10] of 2000, there were 271,651 people, 114,680 households, and 68,808 families residing in the county. The population density was 392 people per square mile (151/km²). There were 119,900 housing units at an average density of 162 per square mile (62/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 88.54% White, 0.88% Black or African American, 0.61% Native American, 3.06% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 4.67% from other races, and 2.18% from two or more races. 10.46% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 114,680 households out of which 30.70% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.90% were married couples living together, 7.70% had a female householder with no husband present, and 40.00% were non-families. 26.30% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.50% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 3.03.

In the county the population was spread out with 22.90% under the age of 18, 13.40% from 18 to 24, 33.60% from 25 to 44, 22.30% from 45 to 64, and 7.80% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 33 years. For every 100 females there were 102.20 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 101.70 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $55,861, and the median income for a family was $70,572. Males had a median income of $48,047 versus $32,207 for females. The per capita income for the county was $28,976. About 4.60% of families and 9.50% of the population were below the poverty line, including 7.60% of those under age 18 and 5.90% of those age 65 or over.


Boulder County is divided into three districts each represented by a commissioner elected county-wide. The three commissioners comprise the county Board of Commissioners and represent the county as a whole. Each commissioner must reside in their respective district and may be elected to a maximum of two four-year terms.

The Board of County Commissioners are full-time public servants and approve the budget for the entire County government. The Board also oversees the management of 10 County departments and the daily operations of the county, work that is done by a county manager or a chief administrative officer in some counties.

Boulder County has seven other county-wide elected officials, including the District Attorney, who represents the 20th Judicial District.[11]

Elected officials

Name Office Year Elected Year Re-Elected
Deb Gardner County Commissioner 2012*
Elise Jones County Commissioner 2012
Cindy Domenico County Commissioner 2007/2008** 2010
Jerry Roberts Assessor 2007/2008*** 2010
Hillary Hall**** Clerk and Recorder 2006 2010
Emma R. Hall**** Coroner 2010 2014
Stanley L. Garnett District Attorney 2008
Joe Pelle Sheriff 2002 2006, 2010, 2014
Lee Stadele Surveyor 2014
Paul Weissmann Treasurer 2014

*Deb Gardner of Longmont was appointed to the Boulder County Board of Commissioners by a majority vote of a Boulder County Democratic Party vacancy committee on January 8, 2012, and was sworn into office on January 10 replacing Ben Pearlman who resigned as commissioner on January 1, 2012 after being selected to head the County Attorney’s office.

**Cindy Domenico was appointed in July 2007 to fill Tom Mayer's seat after he died in June 2007. In 2008, voters elected Domenico to complete the remainder of the term which ran through 2010.

***Jerry Roberts was appointed in July 2007 to replace Cindy Domenico who was elected to the post of Boulder County Commissioner. In 2008, voters elected Roberts to complete the remainder of the term which runs through 2010.

***Hillary and Emma Hall are not related.


Presidential Election Results
Year Democratic Republican Green
2012 69.69% 125,091 27.84% 49,981 0.48% 870
2008 72.29% 124,159 26.14% 44,904 0.15% 250
2004 66.28% 105,564 32.39% 51,586 0.07% 118
2000 50.12% 69,983 36.44% 50,873 11.82% 16,498

As of June 2013, Boulder County is regarded as one of the most liberal counties in Colorado. Republicans took less than 28% of the vote in Boulder County in both 2008 and 2012.

In 2000, Green Party presidential candidate Ralph Nader took 11.82% of the vote in Boulder County, more than twice the 5.25% he took statewide in Colorado, and more than four times his 2.73% nationwide vote share.[12]

Boulder County has also demonstrated its liberal leanings in referenda on social issues, such as in 2006, when nearly 2/3 of Boulder County voters voted to reject Amendment 43, a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman. Although the amendment passed statewide with 55% of the vote, only 33% of Boulder County supported it.[13] In 2012, over 66% of Boulder County voted in favor of Amendment 64, legalizing marijuana in the state of Colorado.

Local courts

The 20th Judicial District of Colorado, the state trial court of general jurisdiction, serves and is coextensive with Boulder County. As of 2009 the 20th Judicial Circuit has eight District Court judges. The Boulder County Court, the state trial court of limited jurisdiction, consists of five judges and six magistrates.

Boulder County has two combined courthouses:

  • The Boulder County Justice Center is located in the City of Boulder and is headquarters to the 20th Judicial District of Colorado. The officies of the district attorney and sheriff are located here, as is the Juvenile Assessment Center, the county's combined assessment and detention facility
  • The Longmont Courthouse in the City of Longmont acts as an extension of the County Court and the District Attorney's Office.[14]


Boulder County, Colorado



Census-designated places

Unincorporated communities

See also


  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved June 7, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ "OMB Bulletin No. 10-02: Update of Statistical Area Definitions and Guidance on Their Uses" (PDF).  
  4. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990".  
  5. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  6. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved June 7, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved June 7, 2014. 
  8. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved June 7, 2014. 
  9. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. Retrieved June 7, 2014. 
  10. ^ "American FactFinder".  
  11. ^ "Boulder County Board of County Commissioners". Boulder County. Retrieved December 1, 2009. 
  12. ^ "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". Retrieved January 5, 2013. 
  13. ^ "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". Retrieved January 5, 2013. 
  14. ^ "20th Judicial District/Boulder County". Colorado State Courts. Retrieved December 1, 2009. 

External links

  • Boulder County Government website
  • Colorado County Evolution by Don Stanwyck
  • Colorado Historical Society
  • Rocky Mountain National Park website
  • Locksmith Boulder Co Services

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