19 Pros and Cons of Living in Pueblo, CO

Updated On October 9, 2023

Colorado, as a state, offers residents amazing vistas, a variety of climates and weather changes, and plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities of all kinds.

Pueblo, as a city, is able to similarly offer residents and visitors these amenities.  

Pueblo can also have its share of problems or areas needing improvement, too.

Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of living in Pueblo. 

Pueblo, CO
Pueblo, CO

Pros of Living in Pueblo

1. Beautiful Natural Scenery

One of the first positives most residents mention about Pueblo is the amazing scenery and natural beauty of the Rocky Mountains and surrounding areas.

Less than an hour’s drive to the mountains to the west, Pueblo offers beautiful vistas and views in many directions. 

Since Pueblo is just outside of the mountains, it also offers a variety of different flora and fauna through the elevation changes surrounding the city.

Pueblo also offers a number of parks and scenic outlooks around the city, some of which we’ll detail more specifically later. 

2. Affordable Cost of Living

Pueblo is, for the most part, a fairly affordable place to live, especially compared to national averages, as well as Colorado cities.

In the state of Colorado, Pueblo comes in 24th out of 28 major cities for the overall cost of living. 

Home prices are relatively low when comparing national averages, as well as food and utility costs.

It is worth noting that prices have increased across the board in the last few years.

Comparisons to the cost of living prices from a few years ago will look quite different now. 

3. Moderate Summer Climate

Due to Pueblo’s location on the Eastern side of the Rockies, the summer months can be very enjoyable.

June through August will see temperatures in the low 90s during the day and the mid-50s at night. 

Humidity is generally pretty low, with averages in July around 28%.

Rainfall totals are also fairly low, as Pueblo averages 260 days of sunshine each year.

Overall, Pueblo offers great conditions for outdoor activities in the summer months. 

4. Outdoor Activities

Speaking of the outdoors in the summer, Pueblo has its share of options to choose from.

The Historic Arkansas Riverwalk area in downtown Pueblo offers visitors a view into old Pueblo. 

There are also opportunities for fly fishing, disc golf, mountain biking, and rock climbing, all within a relative distance of downtown. 

5. Pueblo Zoo

One of the highlighted features of Downtown Pueblo is its world-class zoo.

Located on 25 acres, the Pueblo Zoo houses over 140 species of animals. 

Some of the zoo’s biggest attractions include the Pioneer Ranch, which looks to give some insight into life in a pioneer settlement.

The Zoo is also home to the Serengeti Safari area, populated by a number of African species, including giraffes, zebras, gazelles, lions, storks, and wild dogs. 

6. Lake Pueblo State Park

To the west of town, heading towards the mountains, you’ll find Lake Pueblo State Park.

Following a devastating flood in 1921, Lake Pueblo was created to manage the flow of water in the Arkansas river. 

Lake Pueblo is known for its boating and watersports possibilities, as well as for camping around the lake

. Camping locations do require a reservation, so check Colorado Parks and Wildlife before planning your trip. 

7. Historical Significance

Pueblo is rich with history, both of the settlers and the Native tribes who first inhabited the land.

In 1842, Pueblo was known as Fort Pueblo, a small outpost in the western territories.  

Pueblo was later to become one of the important ore mining towns of Colorado.

Pueblo offers a number of museums and exhibits to illuminate its past, including the El Pueblo Historical Museum, The Pueblo Heritage Museum, and the Train Museum. 

8. Arts and Culture

Pueblo is also well-known for its thriving arts and cultural scene.

Within the city, there are a number of cultural museums and arts centers, including The Sangre de Cristo Arts & Conference Center, The Pueblo Symphony, and The Steel City Theater Company, just to name a few. 

Pueblo also features a Summer Music Festival with a wide variety of bands and performers.

You can find out more about the arts, cultural attractions, or other activities by visiting the Pueblo city website

9. Delicious Food

Pueblo is a city at the crossroads, in which an intersection of traditional western and native cultures comes nose to nose with more traditional American cuisine.

Delicious, authentic Mexican cuisine, such as tamalés, chilés, and frijoles are vying for culinary attention with burgers and fries, sourced from cattle and potatoes raised on local Colorado ranges. 

10. Convenient Location

Pueblo’s location in the state allows for travel to a number of major cities or remote natural areas in a relatively short amount of time.

For instance, Pueblo to Denver is just under a two-hour drive. 

The same amount of time will also put you at Red Rocks Amphitheater, Golden, or Great Sand Dunes National Park.

Pueblo is also relatively close to Monarch Mountain and Breckenridge, so winter sports enthusiasts don’t have far to travel for world-class skiing and snowboarding. 

Cons of Living in Pueblo

1. City Infrastructure

Pueblo, in modern times, was originally a fort outpost, and later a group of four small mining towns, which later combined to become Pueblo. 

As is the case with many towns built in outlying areas, the infrastructure of Pueblo needs to be upgraded. 

The effects of underdeveloped infrastructure usually correlate to out-of-date utility services and problems with upgrading to new technology options.

There can also be problems with strategically developing the urban core or downtown area, which keeps cities behind the curve in adapting to new business and societal opportunities. 

2. Job Market

Pueblo’s job market has been experiencing stagnation, with an unemployment rate of around 6%, while the state average is around 4%.

Fortunately, there seems to be some good news coming, as the unemployment rate has been in decline for a few months now. 

The problem Pueblo is facing is not unique, as more jobs are converting from traditional options to more specific and technically demanding career choices.

For older workers or employees with less training or experience, there can be a widening gap between opportunities and abilities. 

3. Unemployment Rate

As mentioned, Pueblo’s unemployment rate is higher than the state average by a few percentage points.

Compared to a national average of 5.7%, Pueblo is not great, but is not too much higher, either. 

Job growth for Pueblo is projected to be around 35% for the next decade, which is a bit higher than the national average of 33.5%.

This is a positive indicator for future growth for Pueblo. 

4. Public Education

Pueblo’s public education numbers could certainly be better.

In particular, math proficiency testing has been low across the board, from elementary through high school.

Compared to the overall Colorado state trends, Pueblo students are similar in trajectory, although considerably lower in overall test scores. 

One bit of good news; the graduation rate in Pueblo schools has steadily increased over the last five years. 

5. Poverty

One of Pueblo’s overarching problems is its struggling socio-economics.

Poverty is a problem in Pueblo, with the city averaging around 24%.

Colorado’s state average hovers around 14%.

This means one out of every four Pueblo residents is living below the poverty line. 

The median household income for Pueblo is around $49,000, which is far below the national average of $67,500.

With a less-than-stellar job market, it’s likely Pueblo will continue its current pace with a small margin of improvement over the next decade. 

6. Crime

With lower educational output and testing scores, a sluggish job market, and unemployment higher than the national average, a rising crime rate is often the next statistic to emerge.

Pueblo is particularly experiencing a rise in armed robberies, violent crimes, and property crimes. 

It is worth noting that a majority of the crime in Pueblo can be isolated in certain areas, which also correlate with unemployment and poverty.

Conversely, certain areas of Pueblo can be seen as relatively safe and report lower incidences of crime, on average. 

7. Substance Abuse 

When studying crime and poverty numbers, substance abuse numbers are usually in close correlation.

When people feel down and out, they often turn to various forms of escape, including drugs. 

Pueblo is also susceptible to drug activity, considering its location as a city on a major highway heading north and south from Mexico to Denver. 

8. Cold, Snowy Winters 

Pueblo can be quite cold and snowy in the winter months.

This Colorado city averages 25 inches of snow and temperatures ranging between the 50s and teens.

Pueblo has seen cold as low as -15, too!

9. Spring Windstorms

Once spring rolls around in Pueblo, the snow melts and the wind picks up.

Since Pueblo is located near the foot of the Rockies, there are often extreme air pressure differences between the mountains and plains.

These differences cause strong winds to form, which can be damaging and destructive. 

Pueblo, CO
Pueblo, CO

Pros and Cons of Living in Pueblo, CO – Summary Table

Pros of Living in PuebloCons of Living in Pueblo
1. Beautiful Natural Scenery1. City Infrastructure
2. Affordable Cost of Living2. Job Market
3. Moderate Summer Climate3. Unemployment Rate
4. Outdoor Activities4. Public Education
5. Pueblo Zoo5. Poverty
6. Lake Pueblo State Park6. Crime
7. Historical Significance7. Substance Abuse 
8. Arts and Culture8. Cold, Snowy Winters 
9. Delicious Food9. Spring Windstorms
10. Convenient Location

Pueblo Safety Overview

READ THE FULL REPORT: Pueblo Safety Review

Safety Index:

Frequently Asked Questions

Where did Pueblo get its name?

In the Spanish language, Pueblo means town, village, and people.

The Native people of this region began using the term Pueblo following the Spanish’ attempted colonization of the region in the 1500s.

What areas of Pueblo should be avoided?

Generally, steer clear of the Eastside and Bessemer neighborhoods to avoid any trouble.

Robberies and crime, in general, have been noted as substantially higher in these parts of Pueblo.

Can I camp near Pueblo?

Pueblo offers numerous locations for camping, both as an RV or for more primitive camping options.

Lake Pueblo State Park has numerous sites for camping around its shore, as well as more locations on Hwy 50, heading West towards the mountains.

How can I travel to Pueblo?

Amtrak offers train services to Pueblo from 17 other cities.

Pueblo also offers flights in and out of the Pueblo Memorial Airport.

What is Pueblo’s primary industry?

Pueblo is one of the United States’ biggest steel-producing cities.

Starting in 1881 with the Colorado Fuel and Iron Company, steel production continues to be a primary industry for the city and surrounding area.

6 Comments on 19 Pros and Cons of Living in Pueblo, CO

  1. C
    Carol Otis says:

    Forget Colorado State University in Pueblo. It is outstanding.

  2. K
    Kayden Hodge says:

    The food in Pueblo is amazing, if you want to try a different taste of American food, then you have to visit this place for a change.

  3. A
    Angela Silva says:

    The climate here is perfect, I moved to Pueblo a year ago and that is the most awesome decision I have ever made in my life with my family.

  4. J
    Jeffrey Burns says:

    The cost of living in Pueblo is reasonable and affordable, I am considering moving here when I got a stable job soon, I am a freelance writer and would really to write about Pueblo.

  5. A
    Arya Crawford says:

    Good read! I would love to know more about Colorado especially Pueblo since I am researching the place and was thinking of moving there for a fresh start after a bad breakup.

  6. R
    Rowan Weaver says:

    I went here a few times with my friends just to travel and it is breathtaking and peaceful. Plus, the people here are so friendly. They even offered us a place to stay for a night since we decided to extend our vacation for a day.

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