Thornton has an estimated population of 105,182 residents. Established in 1956, it was the first planned community to offer full municipal, recreation, and trash pickup financed by a single tax levy. The land the city now occupies was all farmland before 1953. In 1954, The Thornton Community Association was formed to facilitate the community's development and is credited with its swift official status.
Committed to a high quality of life, Thornton citizens are made up of diverse cultural backgrounds and are active in environmental issues. The city is consistently described and named as one of the most desirable areas to live in the United States. By the virtue of its location, Thornton is also an ideal location for shopping, dining, recreation, and residence. With easy access to the Rocky Mountains, visitors and residents are able to take their pick of hiking, biking, camping, rafting, and snow and water skiing. The numerous lighted tennis courts, athletic fields, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, recreation centers, and gymnasiums offer recreation opportunities for people of all ages and activity levels.
Professional sports events are close at hand with the Denver Broncos, Colorado Avalanche, and the Denver Nuggets. With easy access to Denver, Fort Collins, Loveland, Greeley, Arvada, and Boulder, citizens have access to museums, performing and visual arts, gardens, and a lively nightlife. Thornton's location also provides students with access to the Universities of Colorado at Boulder and Denver, the University of Denver, the University of Northern Colorado, Colorado State University, Regis University, and the Colorado School of Mines.