|Town of Windsor, Colorado|
|— Town —|
Location in Weld County and the state of Colorado
|Incorporated||April 15, 1890|
|- Type||Home Rule Municipality|
|- Mayor||John Vazquez|
|- Total||14.9 sq mi (38.7 km2)|
|- Land||14.6 sq mi (37.9 km2)|
|- Water||0.3 sq mi (0.8 km2)|
|Elevation ||4,797 ft (1,462 m)|
|- Density||664.2/sq mi (255.7/km2)|
|Time zone||Mountain (MST) (UTC-7)|
|- Summer (DST)||MDT (UTC-6)|
|ZIP codes||80528, 80550-80551|
|GNIS feature ID||0204693|
|Website||Town of Windsor|
The Cache la Poudre River runs through the town, which lies on high ground suitable for a railroad. It is approximately half-way between Fort Collins and Greeley on the BNSF Railway, and somewhat near the midpoint of a triangle formed by those two cities and Loveland. The centralized location of the town has given rise to rapid growth in the last two decades.
A rich wheat farming district, the area around Windsor first drew permanent residents in the early 1870s. Two factors were to play a critical role in stimulating Windsor's development: irrigation and the railroad. Irrigation increased crop variety and production and the railroad shipped this bounty to market. The town was platted in 1882, the same year the Windsor Railroad Depot was built, and incorporated in 1890. By 1900, tariffs on foreign sugar had created a market for new sources of sugar. Research in the improved cultivation of sugar beets was taking place at Colorado Agricultural College in Fort Collins, and the capital to advance production and manufacture of beet sugar was coming together. In 1903 a factory for producing sugar from sugar beets was built in Windsor. Sugar beet cultivation required large numbers of "stoop laborers", a need that was met by ethnic German immigrants from Russia. With large families and a strong Lutheran work ethic, the Germans who settled in Windsor and other sugar beet areas would achieve financial success within one generation and own the highest producing beet farms. The Great Western Sugar Company fueled Windsor's economy through the mid 1960's, when the Windsor factory closed. Plentiful water and land drew Kodak to Windsor where it opened a manufacturing plant on the heels of the sugar factory's closing.
In the last two decades, its central location among the population centers of northern Colorado, together with its proximity to Interstate 25, have made it the site of rapid urban growth, particularly on the western edge of town, as it grows towards the interchange on I-25. In the 1990s, the town limits were westward into Larimer County. The incorporated town limits west of Interstate 25 are now contiguous with Loveland, and are separated from southeast Fort Collins by the Fossil Creek Open Space, public lands of Larimer County acquired through a county-wide vote-approved sales tax.
The main business district of town is east-west, along State Highway 392, which also serves as Windsor's Main Street. The oldest Main Street buildings are Victorian two-story commercial structures, dating from the late 19th century. The BNSF line runs north of Main Street. The historic early grid of the town extends for roughly ten blocks south of Main, with a vibrant square green, called Main Park southeast of downtown. The park is surrounded by residences, and by the Town Hall (formerly Park School), at the north end.
Windsor Lake, a small reservoir in the irrigation system of Weld County, is one block north of the BNSF tracks. The lake is a popular spot for fishing. In the last decade, part of the perimeter of the lake has been rimmed with a bike path. The current plans for a bicycle trail throughout the Colorado Front Range include a segment that connects to the local paths, and then to Fort Collins and Greeley along the north bank of the Poudre.
The town is served by two newspapers. The Windsor Beacon, a Gannett Co. paper, publishes Thursdays and Saturdays, and the Windsor Now, a Northern Colorado Communications Group paper, publishes Sundays.
The high school mascot is the Wizards. In 1924 the then-Bulldogs playing with just 8 members won the United States Interscholastic Basketball Championship with a 25-6 victory over Yankton, S.D. After the first round of play, a newspaper story from Chicago described the team as the "western boys," the "Rocky Mountain team," and "wizards" with the ball - 'the Windsor Wizards.'" The school's official mascot name was the Bulldogs, but would soon change to the Wizards. This name is still carried on by the WHS Lady Wizards softball team, who took the State Championship in 2006. The Marching Band also held the Wizards name up by taking 5th place in the State 3A Marching Band Finals in 2007, winning the 3A State Championships in 2008, and having the honor of marching in the 2009 Presidential Inauguration Parade for President Barack Obama. Chimney Park, which features three baseball diamonds and an outdoor swimming pool, sits on the eastern edge of town and includes property that was part of the Great Western Sugar factory. The scenic vista of Longs Peak and other Front Range mountain available from nearly all the town is widely considered one of the catalysts for new residential growth.
The recent 1990s development on the western edge, on the bluff overlooking the Poudre, is of modern subdivision type, and includes a golf course. The residential population of the new development includes day commuters to Fort Collins, Denver, Loveland, and other communities in the area.
Windsor is located at .
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 15.0 square miles (38.7 km²), of which, 14.6 square miles (37.9 km²) of it is land and 0.3 square miles (0.8 km²) of it (2.07%) is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 9,896 people, 3,563 households, and 2,697 families residing in the town. The population density was 675.6 people per square mile (260.8/km²). There were 3,692 housing units at an average density of 252.1/sq mi (97.3/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 91.75% White, 0.45% African American, 0.74% Native American, 0.52% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 4.26% from other races, and 2.21% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 10.50% of the population.
There were 3,563 households out of which 42.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 64.2% were married couples living together, 7.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 24.3% were non-families. 19.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.73 and the average family size was 3.15.
In the town the population was spread out with 29.8% under the age of 18, 7.4% from 18 to 24, 35.1% from 25 to 44, 20.0% from 45 to 64, and 7.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 33 years. For every 100 females there were 96.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.8 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $54,976, and the median income for a family was $60,305. Males had a median income of $42,543 versus $29,280 for females. The per capita income for the town was $23,957. About 3.9% of families and 5.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.4% of those under age 18 and 6.2% of those age 65 or over.
On May 22, 2008 an EF3 tornado devastated the town and many areas of Weld County and Larimer County, killing one camper in his RV, injuring 100 other people in its wake,and it also damage the Windmill Daycare Center at 12:00 in the afternoon.All the staff and children survived with only minor cuts and bruises. The tornado was preceded by golf-ball to baseball sized hail and torrential winds which knocked over 15 Rail Road cars, vehicles and semi trucks. Hundreds of homes were damaged and destroyed. Governor Bill Ritter visited the Windsor area and declared it a local state of emergency. Tornado may be re-rated with further investigation.