Colfax Avenue has been called the longest street in America, but it isn’t. It is the longest commercial street in the U.S.A., extending a total length of 26.5 miles through the cities of Aurora, Denver, Lakewood and Golden, Colorado, as the “Gateway to the Rockies” from the plains to the mountains. In 2006, the first Colfax Marathon was held, traversing this length of Colfax Avenue.
But that’s not the end of the World’s Most Famous Avenue! You can run a marathon and still not be at the end of Colfax. On the outskirts of Aurora, Colfax Avenue bends and follows I-70, then U.S. 36 picks up the Colfax name as a virtually seamless route to Watkins, Bennett and Strasburg. Farther east in Byers, some residents continue to use East Colfax in their addresses, though the name is rarely, if ever, used beyond the town. If you measure Colfax Avenue from Headlight Road in Strasburg, all the way to West Heritage Road in Golden, Colfax Avenue is 53.3 miles long! This clearly earns its’ distinction as the “Longest Commercial Street” in America.
While Colfax Avenue is commonly considered to only run through the Denver metro area, the road extends much farther. Colfax Avenue is a part of U.S. Route 40, the highway which, during its heyday, ran 3,157 miles from Atlantic City to San Francisco, traversing the midsection of the United States. Route 40 served America well, carrying more automobile traffic than any other transcontinental highway.