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Top art blog Hyperallergic has some fun with alien conspiracy at DIA

A bit of local lure goes national with Hyperallergic's recent piece on DIA. The airport is considering getting rid of the maintenance-heavy Interior Garden, which is a great excuse to bring up the old trope about aliens and Satan-worshippers being part of DIA's grand plan. Again.

There is good info about the endangered pice:

"The airport’s art has been in the news recently because an installation by Michael Singer, “Interior Garden” (1995) — commissioned for the opening of the airport itself — was flagged by management as an expensive liability. This led to outcry against the proposed deaccessioning of the work, with the public weighing in on the piece’s value for the airport and the city."

And some nonsense, that's always worth repeating, probably because nothing more interesting ever really happens at DIA:

"Conspiratorial “experts” like Jay Weidner assert that the airport’s murals and capstone prove the existence of a secret government plan for a “New World Order.” Others implicate the airport in the murder of JonBenét Ramsey. One local Evangelical Christian group, Cephas Ministries,  claimed that the DIA was built as part of a plot to murder the “people that Lucifer hates.”

Read the whole thing here.

 

Vivid New York Times photo essay of Denver captures our endangered animal fetish

The New York Times featured the National Wildlife Property Repository in a stunning pictorial essay by photographer Tristan Spinski.

The repository holds, as the accompanying text points out, "stuffed monkeys and ivory carvings, snow leopard coats and dried seal penises, chairs with tails and lamps with hooves" and other oddities.

Where do the 1.3 million items occupying 22,000 square feet come from?

"Some items in the repository are confiscated from naive tourists, but most are part of a global trade in endangered wildlife."

It's not pretty. But you can see the photos here.

L.A. Times catches up with Denver's Laundry Truck

The Los Angeles Times spotlighted Denver's Laundry Truck in a feature that called the aid to homelss people "simple and innovative."

An excerpt:

“You need 13,000 watts running through the truck to make it work,” said Tim Reinen, executive director of Radian Inc., a nonprofit design group that worked with Bayaud on the truck. “Then you have six dryers operating simultaneously at 120 degrees heated by propane.”

And an 800-pound generator mounted underneath.

After several redesigns and $90,000 in donations, the truck hit the streets in April. Denver Water, a city utility, lets it hook up to fire hydrants for water and provides a meter to measure how much it uses. Since then the truck has washed 660 loads, or about 10,000 pounds of laundry."

Read the full story here.
 

Construction Equipment magazine offers comprehensive take on I-70's innovative jobs program

The innovative jobs program for the Interstate 70 renovation project was big news in the construction industry.  Illinois-based Construction Equipment magazine offered a suprisingly thorough look, showing how different constituenices value news differently.

It is a unique program, as the story points out:

"An estimated 350 workers will be drawn from the area and provided with training to build the Central 70 project now and a good career as time goes on."

The training is real -- and funded:

"Using a $400,000 federal grant received last year, CDOT will partner with Gary Community Investments (GCI) to provide more than $1 million for training and support programs, including child care so residents can take advantage of the training opportunities and jobs.  Last year the U.S. Department of Transportation gave CDOT – one of only nine other transportation agencies nationwide – permission to pilot a local-hire program for Central 70."

Read the whole story here.

 

Atlanta Journal-Constitution comes to Denver to write about good transporation ideas.

People in Denver may complain about public transportation on those days when the trains run slow, but, from the outside, things look pretty good. The Atlanta-Journal-Constitution, exploring ways its home city can plan for future transit needs, found some good ideas at work here.

"It’s the kind of complex transportation network experts say is needed to address traffic congestion in booming metro areas. And Atlanta officials are paying attention to Denver and other cities that are building those kind of networks.Metro Atlanta’s long-term transportation plan includes many of the elements the Mile High City already has: bus rapid transit, new light rail and streetcar lines, an extensive network of toll lanes for congested highways and new trails to encourage commuting by bike and on foot."

The story includes a nice summary of the history of light-rail. A good read for anyone here who doesn't know the evolution of our trianst system and what it can teach us about making big, bold moves:

"The Denver Regional Transportation District opened its first light rail line – a 5.3-mile stretch along I-25 in central Denver – in 1994. It proved so successful RTD had to order six more vehicles to carry passengers."

Read the whole story here.

 

Broadway World spotlights Denver's world premiere of Frozen, the musical

Broadway World helped give a little hype to Denver Center Attractions' upcoming presentation of Frozen. The musical play, based on the popular Disney animated movie, opens here first in August. Then makes its way to New York.

An excerpt:

""This Broadway-bound Frozen, a full-length stage work told in two acts, is the first and only incarnation of the tale that expands upon and deepens its indelible plot and themes through new songs and story material from the film's creators. Like the Disney Theatrical Broadway musicals that have come before it, it is a full evening of theatre and is expected to run two and a half hours.
Based on the 2013 film written by a trio of Oscar winners, Frozen features music and lyrics by the creators of the film score Kristen Anderson-Lopez (Up Here, Winnie the Pooh, In Transit) and EGOT-winner Robert Lopez (Avenue Q, The Book of Mormon, Up Here) and a book by Jennifer Lee (Zootopia, Wreck-It Ralph), the film's screenwriter and director (with Chris Buck). Frozen won 2014 Oscars for Best Song ("Let It Go") and Best Animated Feature."


Read, and watch, the piece here.

A quick hit from Forbes puts Denver at top of warehouse development

Denver apparently leads the nation in leased warehose space currently under development.

According to Forbes:

"The top 10 markets with the most warehouse space under construction include Denver, Kansas City, Chicago and Indianapolis. In Denver, 70.3% of the space under construction is pre-leased, followed by 54% in Kansas City, 51.3% in Chicago, 50.6% in Indianapolis and 43.4% in New Jersey."

Read the whole story here.

Bloun Art Info notes major donation to Denver Art Museum

Blouin Art Info noted that the Denver Art Museum will receive significant works as part of a donation from the
Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros,

Here's an excerpt:

"According to CPPC, “The donation seeks to expand the geographical and temporal horizons of these institutions’ collections, expand scholarship, and offer a broader, more diverse and inclusive vision of Latin American artistic production from the 17th century to the mid-19th century.”

CPPC’s colonial art collection was formed with the aim of creating a broad representation of Venezuelan art from the mid-1600s to the mid-1800s. The core is complemented by works from the viceroyalties of New Spain (Mexico) and Peru as well as elsewhere in the Spanish Caribbean."

Read the rest of the article here.     
 

New York Times features Denver renter in story about evolving Airbnb rules

The New York Times set its story about Airbnb's evovling business model in Denver. North Park Hill's Jill Bishop serves as the perfect anecdote for a piece about how the profile of renters has changed as the company has sharpened the services it offers.

The piece starts like this:

"For nine years, Jill Bishop enjoyed the camaraderie of renting out her spare bedroom on Airbnb.Guests hung out on her comfy sofas. They dined together. They shared her bathroom, which was filled with half-empty shampoo bottles and an array of lotions.
Then, things changed.
Airbnb urged Ms. Bishop to make the bathroom look more like a hotel. New local regulations governing Airbnb meant she had to start collecting city lodging taxes, which made her feel awkward when she had to ask guests for money. And Airbnb began conditioning her to host people who are just looking for a place to sleep — not a home to share."

You can read the rest here.
 

Urban Land Institute credits Denver as one of several "smart cities"

The Urban Land Institute, a thought leader in the development of cities, uses the Peña Station Next development, near DIA, as its number one example in talking about the evoltuion of building technology.

An excerpt:

"Panasonic and local developer L.C. Fulenwider, which are partnering on the project with the city of Denver and an assortment of other local stakeholders, envision a dense mixed-use project—including 1.5 million square feet (139,000 sq m) of office space, 500,000 square feet (47,000 sq m) of retail uses, and 2,500 residences—that will double as a proving ground for exotic technology. When the $500 million project is completed in ten to 12 years, it will be a landscape where virtually every object—from lighting to parking meters—will be connected to the internet and equipped with sensors and/or cameras to supply a continuous stream of data to the development’s managers, who also will be able to control them via cloud-based apps."

It's a fascinating read that travels around the globe. Access the entire article here.
 

Canadian Press writes about challenges of promoting cannabis tourism

An interesting outsider's take on how we are promoting pot. Or, more accurately, not promoting it. 

An excerpt:

"Welcome to Colorado, where the cannabis-consuming tourist can enjoy a sushi-and-joint rolling class, a buds-and-suds tour combining dispensaries with micro-breweries or get a cannabis-infused massage at a "4-20-friendly" hotel — a reference to annual marijuana celebrations on April 20.

Just don't expect to pick up a brochure at the airport.

Since legalizing recreational weed in 2012 and becoming the first state in the country to allow storefront sales in 2014, Colorado has seen a boom in marijuana-themed visitor experiences. But the Colorado Tourism Office and local organization Visit Denver say they can't promote the industry because marijuana is illegal federally."

Read the full story here.


 

Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports of Denver-based Brickstone's new project

Brickstone is hoping to "demolish a 1950s office building on the north side of Lake Calhoun in order to build a 200-unit residential tower," according to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

The newspaper says the project is evolving: "The company now says that it wants to build an eight-story building that is 112 feet tall, down from its initial idea of a 13-story building."
 
 
Excerpt: "In August 2015, an entity associated with Brickstone paid the Ackerberg Group $8 million for the Lake Pointe Corporate Center at 3100 W. Lake St. The 50,000-square-foot building was built in 1953 and is known best for a colorful, nearly three-story steel sculpture on its driveway and a pair of oversized green Adirondack chairs on its lawn."

The developer still needs permission before it can move forward: "Brickstone needs a conditional-use permit from city planners to redevelop the property because the maximum height limitation in the area is 56 feet, or about four stories, and the site is within the Shoreland Overlay District, which further limits the height of structures to 35 feet, or about two stories."

Read the entire news story here.
 

Bloomberg says marijuana jobs are causing a shortage of restaurant workers in Denver

Bloomberg says marijuana jobs are causing a shortage of restaurant workers in Denver

Here's an excerpt:

The pot industry is taking a toll on local restaurant work forces and in some cases, liquor sales. “No one is talking about it,” said Bobby Stuckey, the James Beard award winning co-owner of Frasca Food and Wine in Boulder and the soon-to-open  Tavernetta in Denver. “But Colorado’s restaurant labor market is in Defcon 5 right now, because of weed facilities.” 

Denver’s population has been steadily growing. In 2016, U.S. News & World Report ranked it as the best place to live in the country because of its proximity to the great outdoors, along with the tech boom, among other things. The city is particularly popular with millennials. A boom in restaurants soon followed, transforming a sleepy culinary scene into a particularly vibrant one. (Another reason for the expanding dining scene is the $54 million Union Station renovation, which opened in 2014 and brought a concentration of fine dining spots downtown.) 

Read the rest here.

 

PBS NewsHour covers "Mi Tierra" at DAM

The new exhibit at the Denver Art Museum delves into the Mexican-American experience.

Excerpt:

RAMIRO GOMEZ: It's important for me to highlight these people that are not going to be recorded in our history.

JEFFREY BROWN: In Denver, Gomez was one of 13 young Mexican-American artists chosen for an exhibition called Mi Tierra, their assignment, to create a new work that explores the idea of home and place in the American West.
There were smaller paintings and large installations, videos about the land before Europeans settled here, and a garden that looked like a giant pinata.

Many of the artists tackled the politically charged topic of immigration. This piece contained an actual panel of the U.S.-Mexico border fence.

RAMIRO GOMEZ: For me, place becomes a very difficult word to focus on, just because place is never permanent. We're constantly moving. It's constantly shifting.

I'm an American-born child to Mexican immigrants. So, I'm at once Mexican and American. I'm in between. That in-between space, that in-between place that I occupy is something that is constantly changing within myself.

Watch and read the rest here.

ULC's Tony Pickett offers housing lessons to Oregon's Metro

Tony Pickett of Denver's Urban Land Conservancy recently spoke about affordability and equity in Portland.

Excerpt:

The Urban Land Conservancy, where Pickett has worked since 2013, has even more opportunity to create affordability in the Mile-High City. Started with a $15 million seed fund, the organization has grown over time to invest $70 million in 28 projects, generating over $400 million in redevelopment.

One of the conservancy's advantages has been the ability to move quickly to purchase prime sites as Denver undergoes a multi-billion dollar expansion of its rail transit system.

Pickett shared the example of the conservancy's Park Hill Village West development, on Denver's new A-Line commuter rail connecting downtown to Denver International Airport. Urban Land Conservancy purchased the site close to a planned station in a historically black neighborhood to create permanently affordable housing with easy access to the region's growing transit network. The development opened at about the same time as the rail line.

Read the rest here.
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