|New towers and still open parking lots|
But of course, this was a road trip and so I for once did not come in at DIA but had to make my way up I-25 because I had deserted I-70 in favor of a scenic route along Colorada 86, a for the most part really pretty and convenient ride.
|always party time at Larimer Square, a historic area|
Having come for work there wasn't much exploring of the city this time, but have been here many times before and will cheat a bit and mention previous experiences.
Denver has this cool factor that attracts young people in droves, a fact that leaves an East coaster a bit for loss of an explanation since Denver is afflicted by many of the urban ills that plague especially newer towns and cities, namely too many freeways (the hub idea again!) and too many demolitions and surface parking lots. But every time there are new towers rising, office, residential and mixed use. The city has good luck with strong Mayors, Hickenlooper, now governor of Colorado being one of them. He famously opened a brewpub in the back then seedy Union Station area, later as Mayor built a ballpark there and then initiated one of the largest downtown re-calibration schemes in America, the Union Station TOD opening up whole new districts of housing, offices and retail, shifting downtown in essence through a memorable transportation hub. Denver set the standard for new transportation infrastructure, not only with its airport but with five new rail lines all in one package (FasTrack).
Denver also set a gold standard for the redevelopment of failed malls into attractive new urban areas. (Cherry Creek).
|The baine of parking: Note that almost anything on this picture|
is devoted to car parking incl the structure on the left
|Denver Union Station area transit hub|
Denver completed a comprehensive re-write of its zoning code, a feat that many other cities like Baltimore, Indianapolis or LA are still struggling with.
|Denver Libeskind Art Museum|
Of course, Denver attracts active lifestyle folks and the proximity of the Rockies is a big draw in a place where it is a pretty long way to anywhere else (not counting Denver's satellites such as Boulder, Golden and other small towns in its orbit).
Klaus Philipsen, FAIA
Related articles I wrote about Denver:
Four Things to Learn from Denver