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Architectural Digest reports on Denver's proposed "supertall" skyscraper

Architecture magazines don't pay all that much attetnion to Denver, but a 90-story high-rise, proposed for 650 17th Street got a lot of people talking.

If built, the structure would be the tallest in the city, "topping out at 1,000 feet, Six Fifty 17 would stand 286 taller than the Republic Plaza building, Denver’s current tallest at 714 feet," according to the magazine. It would house 84 luxury condos and 22,000 square feet of commercial retail space. 

The developer is Manhattan-bassed Greenwich Realty Capital. The designer is Uruguayan architect Carlos Ott, who designed the Opera de la Bastille in Paris.


See a rendering and read the entire 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.

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.


 

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.

 

Adelaide looks to Denver for lessons

An InDaily story looked at what economic lessons the capital of South Australia could learn from Colorado's capital city.

Excerpt:

In 2015, Denver was named as [most] liveable city in the west and the fourth-best metro area for science, technology, engineering and mathematics professionals in America. More than 38 per cent of Colorado's adult population has completed a bachelor's degree or higher. In 2015, Colorado was also ranked as the second-most entrepreneurial State in America.

Adelaide, like Denver, provides a very high quality of life, affordable housing, quality health care, a ready supply of commercial property for lease or purchase, friendly people, a well-educated work force, and many other attributes that mirror Denver's. Adelaide's countryside is very attractive, tourism is well targeted and events are significantly supported.

Adelaide Airport has improved quite dramatically since the 1990s. Adelaide Oval is a world class venue. So why hasn't Adelaide grown at anything like the very fast rate of Denver?

Read the rest here.

Mayor Hancock gives Denver travel tips to U.S. News & World Report

His picks included LoDo, the Denver Art Museum and Red Rocks.

Excerpt:

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock has been a key force behind efforts to ramp up tourism in the Mile High City since being elected in 2011, working to expand direct flights to Denver International Airport and improve the airport's facilities. A longtime Denver resident now in his second term, Hancock has seen firsthand how much the city has grown and changed over the years. He says Denver has a special quality that makes the city unique.

"There’s a certain spirit in this city you don’t find everywhere," he tells U.S. News. "It’s a very optimistic, forward-thinking, positive spirit that permeates every sector and every individual."

. . .

Describe your perfect day in Denver.

My family and I would go have brunch at Snooze or one of the great diners in Denver, like the Denver Diner downtown. Then we would go walk the dogs in City Park. Then maybe we’d go to the Denver Zoo, which is well-respected around the country. The primates and the elephants are my favorite animal exhibits. At night, we’d have dinner, then we would go find somewhere to enjoy live music because Denver has more live music venues than Austin, Texas. I love listening to jazz at El Chapultepec and Jazz at Jacks. The Soiled Dove Underground in [the neighborhood of] Lowry has great sound and gets some national acts.

Read the rest here.

Zagat tabs Denver as no. 3 food city in U.S.

Only Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles topped Denver on the 25-city list.

Excerpt:

The best city for singles. For millennials. For entrepreneurs. For outdoorspeople. Over the past few years, Denver has ranked at or near the top of virtually every U.S. index there is; it was only a matter of time before outsiders "discovered" its dynamic dining scene too. This year alone, Nobu MatsuhisaGregory GourdetDeborah Schneider and Hugh Acheson staked claims here; Jeffrey Wall of Atlanta's Kimball House is on his way, and so is the team behind New York's Death & Co.

Meanwhile, there's no stopping our homegrown talent. Beard award-winners Bobby Stuckey and Lachlan Mackinnon-Patterson (Frasca) will be opening Tavernetta soon; fellow recipient Jennifer Jasinski (Rioja et al.) is expanding her mini empire with Ultreia. 

Read the rest here.

Columbia Journalism Review talks to Denverite editor

Corey Hutchins of the Columbia Journalism Review interviewed Dave Burdick of Denverite for a podcast.

Excerpt:

About five months ago, a for-profit, hyperlocal online news site called Denverite launched in Colorado's capital with the feel of a national startup. Backed by a trio of investors in Business Insider, the news outlet is the pilot project for a potential string of sites in other cities.

Denverite does not yet have a business model, but will start experimenting with how to make the site profitable. On Election Day, for instance, the outlet will host a ticketed event at its downtown office. In the meantime, the news organization's team of about 10 journalists have been cranking out the news about Denver and its metro area of nearly 3 million people.

So what has the journey been like so far? Last month I sat down with site editor Dave Burdick, who left his job as deputy features editor of The Denver Post to run the new startup. We talked about the challenges of launching a hyperlocal, digital-only news product, how he's building new audiences, and what a potential revenue stream might one day look like. The man has a passion for local news.



Read and listen here.

CBC contrasts Calgary and Denver

CBC Calgary took a hard look at the story behind Denver's resiliency during the recent energy bust.

Excerpt:

Denver and Calgary have a lot in common. But while Denver is rising, Calgary is struggling.

Founded within 20 years of each other, both cities were 19th century western frontiers. Places built on railways, agriculture and oil. For decades, both cities followed a similar economic path -- including the highs and lows of the energy industry.

But then, just a little more than 30 years ago, both cities faced a crisis. Calgary went one way, and is still riding the energy wave. Denver another, leading to a thriving economy. 

Calgary could stand to learn a thing or two from Denver. Something that occurred to Calgary Economic Development, which recently sent someone down on a fact-finding mission to study the successes of the Mile High City -- named for the exact mile it sits above sea level.

Read the rest here.

CNBC spotlights most popular brews at GABF

The cable network looked at the breweries with the longest lines at the largest beer festival in the U.S., including Denver's Black Project.

Excerpt:

There are two types of winners at the Great American Beer Festival: Those that walk away with one of the coveted medals from the show's judges and those that claim an unofficial people's choice award. 

The two often intersect, but it's not a sure thing. Yet in the two days before the awards are announced at the country's premier beer festival, beer lovers roam the hall, which is roughly the size of seven football fields and hosts roughly 800 brewers, sharing notes and rushing to try offerings with the strongest word-of-mouth buzz.

Some of the brewers that regularly have lines of 50 or more people are already iconic names in the craft beer world. Russian River Brewing (maker of the eternally popular Pliny the Elder) and Avery Brewing (whose Callipygian has been especially in demand at this year's show), for instance, regularly see people wait patiently for a 1-ounce sample of their products, only to walk to the back of the line and wait again for another.

Read the rest here.

Fox News spotlights Rise of the Rest in Denver

The story posed a big question: "What can other cities learn from Denver about how the rest can rise?"

Excerpt:

Today, we toured Denver on a bus to see an entrepreneurial ecosystem that, actually, compared to many places, is doing pretty well. According to the Kauffman Foundation, Denver is one of the top five cities in startup activity, and Colorado ranks fourth out of 50 states. Two decades ago, that wouldn’t have been the case. As we visit cities across the country, we often hear what's not working -- we need more capital, more connectivity, better founders.

While Denver is self-aware that they can do so much more, they're on an encouraging pathway to how a community can do its best. At lunch, Steve Case talked about the "three Ps" of the Web's Third Wave. In reflecting on Denver, I saw three Ps that have made Colorado a great startup community.

Read the rest here.

WSJ showcases FasTracks

The Wall Street Journal reported on the successes and challenges of Denver's transit expansion.

Excerpt:

The system opened two new rail lines this year -- one to the city's airport and one to northern suburbs -- both operated under contract by private company Denver Transit Partners LLC. Two more lines are scheduled to open by the end of 2016.

Financially, RTD is "basically doing everything right," said Jeff Brown, who researches public-transit system finances and is chairman of Florida State University's Department of Urban and Regional Planning.

Still, in 2013 the RTD spent the most in capital costs per passenger ride among the nation's 15 largest transit agencies, due to the cost of its buildout. And it isn't immune from economic concerns.

Read the rest here.

TimeOut calls Denver fifth-best city lo live in the U.S.

Denver ranked on the list high due to its parks, proximity to the Rockies, transit, music and beer -- plus legal marijuana.

Excerpt:

Denver is one of the fastest-growing cities in the nation, boasting 83,000 new residents since 2010. Educated millennials lead the charge, drawn to Denver's cool music scene, dozens of breweries, public transportation network -- including bike share -- and, in some cases, the legalization of marijuana in Colorado. 

Read the rest here.

Telegraph asks: "Is Denver becoming America's coolest city?"

The British newspaper peered into the city in a travel feature and came away with an appreciation for its beer, art and most everything else.

Excerpt:

The first permanent building in Denver wasn’t a church, a home or a bank; it was a saloon. Now, more than 150 years after gold prospectors first began to arrive, Denverites still clearly love their beer.

. . .

Simply strolling or cycling around the city (Denverites love bikes as much as they love beer) gives you an idea of the remarkable amount of choice here for hop-heads. There’s a German brewery (Prost Brewing Company), an English brewery (Hogshead), a hippy brewery (Vine Street Pub & Brewery), and even a heavy metal brewery (TRVE Brewing Company). For the truly thirsty, you can seamlessly link many of the best establishments together, on foot or bike, via the popular Denver Beer Trail, with free downloadable maps. The Denver Beer Fest, a nine-day gala of local brews held in the autumn, is an enjoyable way to tap into the scene, and the Great American Beer Festival, following swiftly behind, showcases more than 3,000 beers from across the USA at Denver’s Colorado Convention Center.

But it's not all about pints and pitchers: Denver as a whole is very much on the up. The second fastest growing city in the country after Austin, it’s also chasing down the Texan capital in the cool stakes too. A magnet for young professionals, the active and outdoorsy, it’s one of the youngest cities in the US too, with a median population age of just 34. 

Read the rest here.

Tech.Co outlines "10 Denver Startups You Need to Know About"

For Denver Startup Week, Tech.Co published a list of the "10 Denver Startups You Need to Know About," including Gusto, Revolar and MassRoots.

Excerpt:

With beautiful mountains, legal marijuana, and 300 days of sunshine a year, it's no wonder millions of people have begun to flock to the popular Colorado city. Whether it's new college graduates looking to settle down somewhere adventurous or seasoned entrepreneurs looking to capitalize on a new market, there is no shortage of new blood entering Denver on a regular basis. But what does that mean for the startups in this burgeoning ecosystem? It means it's exploding as fast as the population.

Luckily for you, Denver Startup Week will provide an opportunity for you to take a look at all the entrepreneurial talent present in the Mile High City. This five-day celebration (September 12-16) will showcase everyone from on-demand travel concierge services to innovative intelligence startups, Denver provides the perfect ecosystem for new customers, innovative ideas, and enticing returns.

Read the rest here.

Next City spotlights workforce development in Denver

Next City reported on the decentralization and expansion of workforce development by the Denver Office of Economic Development.

Excerpt:

Before this year, there weren't many spots in Denver where an unemployed person could get help stepping back into the job stream. A small cluster of employment service centers were huddled in the heart of the city, but most of its 11 districts were largely unserved.

Now that the Office of Economic Development (OED) has decided to divide Denver's job training programs out to private contractors, the number of government-funded work and economic assistance centers will jump seven-fold, going from seven to nearly 50 and spanning across all 11 districts instead of only five.

"People can access these services where they're comfortable instead of traveling [into downtown]," says Denise Bryant, director of the OED's workforce development program. "We have contractors and subcontractors that are now actually in the community."

Read the rest here.

Apto, WellTok, Tender Belly make Inc. 5000

Denver-based Apto, SurvWest, WellTok, BridgeHealth Medical, Stoneside Blinds & Shades, Digital Fusion, Tender Belly and PlanOmatic all made the Inc. 5000 2016 list of fastest-growing companies in the U.S.

Excerpt:

Apto

Provides Web-based software that helps real estate brokers manage customer relationships, properties, listings, deals, and back-office tasks.

2016 INC. 5000 RANK: #175
  • 3-Year Growth: 2,079%
  • 2015 Revenue: $2.3 M
  • Location: Denver, CO
  • Industry: Software
  • Launched: 2012
Read the rest here.

Streetsblog's Talking Headways Podcast talks Denver transportation

Streetsblog's Talking Headways Podcast covered Denver transportation issues as the I-70 expansion, the A Line and Colfax Avenue.

Listen:

 

Read the rest here.

Skift profiles Visit Denver's experiential marketing strategies

Travel-trade news site Skift took a look at Visit Denver's creative marketing to Chicago event planners.

Excerpt:

Traditionally, destination marketing organizations (DMOs) like Visit Denver have emphasized their urban, hospitality, and transit infrastructure in their marketing messaging targeting big international associations.

Now, however, Denver is shifting toward more experiential and event-based marketing strategies to sell a more dynamic version of the Colorado conference experience to Chicago-based event planners seeking to bigger and better attendance driver.

Last month, for example, Visit Denver installed a re-creation of its famous Red Rocks Amphitheatre in the middle of Chicago's biggest food festival, Taste of Randolph Street, to host all of the musical performances. Located 10 miles outside Denver, Red Rocks is a massive geological formation with natural acoustics that was converted into a permanent venue for outdoor performances back in the 1930s.

Dubbed "Denver Live on the Rocks Stage," the pop-up event facility in Chicago consisted of two 76×30-foot rock wings and a VIP area for the region's top association conference organizers. It offered a more enticing way for event planners to mingle with Visit Denver representatives, versus a standard ballroom cocktail reception.

Read the rest here.

Milwaukee Mag drinks in Denver's beer scene

Milwaukee Magazine took a "barnstorming tour of the amazing beer city that is Denver."

Excerpt:

Denver is such an amazing beer city, and there are so many quality breweries to choose from that it can be overwhelming. Logistics and time prevented me from hitting a few places on my list, but I did manage a solid barnstorming tour. Here's the rundown (in order of appearance).

Black Shirt Brewing (3719 Walnut St.) resides on the edge of the up-and-coming RiNo (River North Art District). It's an outpost conveniently located one block from a light rail stop (that I took from the airport). Red ales are the specialty and they're pretty tasty, as is the Blood Orange Double IPA. The dark taproom is welcoming and has a rock vibe—Fugazi was playing as I walked in. It was a great start to the weekend.

I hiked a mile from Black Shirt to Spangalang Brewery (2736 Welton St.), which resides in a former DMV office in the Five Points area -- the name pays homage to the jazz heritage in the neighborhood. Co-founder Taylor Rees was the head brewer at Great Divide before opening Spangalang last spring. The spot offers a range of well-crafted styles. My favorites were the Lil' Confused Dry Hopped Wheat Beer, a crisp summer brew made with Hefeweizen yeast. The big, juicy fruit flavor of the D-Train IPA was also perfect.

Read the rest here.

Nashville looks to Denver for lessons on funding transit

A Nashville Public Radio story reported on Denver's lessons for funding a transit expansion.

Excerpt:

For example, in Denver in the late 1990s, voters rejected a plan. Later, they approved a sales tax for light rail. That was only after advocates spoke to tens of thousands of residents, and found pockets of support among young professionals and, surprisingly, retirees.

"One of the biggest pockets of support were retired women over the age of 65, because they saw it as the first opportunity for them to come back into downtown and see a show at the performing arts center and have lunch together with the girls," said Kathleen Osher with Denver's Transit Alliance.

Read the rest here.

Politico Magazine takes stock of FasTracks in Denver

Politico Magazine took a deep dive into the expansion of Denver's rail network.

Excerpt:

A decade ago, travelers arriving at Denver's sprawling new airport would look out over a vast expanse of flat, prairie dog-infested grassland and wonder if their plane had somehow fallen short of its destination. The $4.9 billion airport -- at 53 square miles, larger than Manhattan -- was derided as being "halfway to Kansas," and given the emptiness of the 23-mile drive to the city, it felt that way.

Last month, arriving visitors boarded the first trains headed for downtown, a journey that zips past a new Japanese-style "smart city" emerging from the prairie before depositing passengers 37 minutes later in a bustling urban hive of restaurants, shops and residential towers that only six years ago was a gravelly no man's land -- an entire $2 billion downtown neighborhood that's mushroomed up around the hub of Denver's rapidly expanding light rail system.

The 22.8-mile spur from the airport to downtown is the latest addition to a regional rail system that has transformed Denver and its suburbs. Using an unprecedented public-private partnership that combines private funding, local tax dollars and federal grants, Denver has done something no other major metro area has accomplished in the past decade, though a number of cities have tried. At a moment when aging mass transit systems in several major cities are capturing headlines for mismanagement, chronic delays and even deaths, Denver is unveiling a shiny new and widely praised network: 68 stations along 10 different spurs, covering 98 miles, with another 15 miles still to come. Even before the new lines opened, 77,000 people were riding light rail each day, making it the eighth-largest system in the country even though Denver is not in the top 20 cities for population. The effects on the region's quality of life have been measurable and also surprising, even to the project's most committed advocates. Originally intended to unclog congested highways and defeat a stubborn brown smog that was as unhealthy as it was ugly, the new rail system has proven that its greatest value is the remarkable changes in land use its stations have prompted, from revitalizing moribund neighborhoods, like the area around Union Station, to creating new communities where once there was only sprawl or buffalo grass.

Read the rest here.

SF Gate looks at Lawrence Argent's 92-foot "Venus"

SF Gate reported on what will be the tallest statue in San Francisco, the 92-foot Venus, courtesy Denver's Lawrence Argent.

Excerpt:

The Trinity Place art requirement is $5 million, and once that number was reached, Sangiacomo embraced it, taking several trips to Italy with his wife in search of inspiration.

Then he invited four artists to make presentations at the Trinity Property headquarters. The first was Lawrence Argent, a Denver artist, who was invited on the basis of a giant blue bear he created to stand outside the Colorado Convention Center and press his nose and paws to the glass.

"We were so enamored with the creativity of that and how fun it was that we flew him out," says Walter Schmidt, CEO of Trinity Properties. Argent made his presentation, and Sangiacomo responded in Godfather-like fashion.

Read the rest here.

Charlotte Observer calls Denver "the future of transit"

The Charlotte Observer ran a story focused on regional collaboration that painted Denver as a transit model for other cities.

Excerpt:

The Denver area has a long history of regionalism, in part due to necessity: The region makes up a majority of the state's population and tax receipts, so there's no other game in town, so to speak. The transit system has been run by a regional entity that covers multiple counties since its inception.

But that doesn't mean cooperation has always come easily. In 1997, the first attempt at a ballot measure for a regional sales tax increase to pay for an expanded system went down 57 to 43 percent.

"People say, did you all wake up one morning and decide to cooperate? We didn't," said Maria Garcia Berry of CRL Associates, a public policy firm that helped craft the successful 2004 ballot campaign.

Read the rest here.

Economy essay on Denver spans "cranes, costumes, craft beer and cannabis"

A "My City" essay on Denver from local engineer/musician John Runnels was headlined "cranes, costumes, craft beer and cannabis."

Excerpt:

With so much to do, new people move here every day. Just from the vibrations the city gives off, it’s obvious that the economy is doing well.

Having worked both as a professional musician and as an engineer designing buildings, I have an interesting perspective on what that economy looks like.

Strangely, both jobs are similar in the way the bigger economic picture affects them. Live music is a luxury and usually one of the first expenses cut when budgets are tight. As an engineer, you’re one of the first to know when new buildings are on the way. For me it was extremely noticeable when the recession was coming to an end in 2011. Since then it’s only been an upward trend, evidenced by all that construction and the flourishing music scene.

Read the rest here.

Technical.ly debuts video on Denver's tech scene

Technical.ly, a network of websites covering technology in a number of cities on the East Coast, released a video on Denver's tech scene made when it kicked off the Tomorrow Tour at The Commons on Champa in Feb. 2016.

Participants stressed that the city's uncommonly collaborative nature has helped catalyze an especially fertile startup community.


Video:




Read the rest here.

NY Times reports on DeVotchka's take on "Sweeney Todd"

The New York Times reported on DeVotchka's take on "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street" at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts.

Excerpt:

When the orchestra lands its final note -- with a sharpness worthy of the razor-wielding protagonist -- the company bursts into whoops and applause. It is the first time the vocalists have rehearsed with the musicians -- the first time they've heard the new orchestrations arranged, as unlikely as it seems, by the indie rock band DeVotchKa.

"When we hit that last note and they screamed it seriously felt like eight months of tension was doused with the emotion from all these actors," said DeVotchKa's percussionist, Shawn King, who along with bandmates Tom Hagerman and Jeanie Schroder, arranged the score and will play in the pit. "Until this moment, I felt like, 'Are we doing the right thing here? Was it a good idea?'"

Many a theater company lately has done more than merely attend the tale of Sweeney Todd, to quote the show's opening salvo. They've tweaked one of Mr. Sondheim's most diabolically crafted, technically demanding musicals, aiming in some cases to reach beyond the traditional -- and aging -- theater audiences while honoring one of its masters.

Read the rest here.

Men's Journal plots a "Four-Day Weekend" in Denver

Men's Journal planned a Denver getaway that encompassed kayaking, drinking beer, exploring Union Station and other local diversions.

Excerpt:

Denver grew by over 80,000 people in the past five years -- thanks to a strong job market that brought in new chefs, festivals, bars, and a spot on top of plenty of Best Places to Live lists. But why move to Denver -- with its now-booming housing prices -- when you can have it all in a long weekend? Here’s your guide to exploring the natural wonders, the best beers on the planet, the legitimately exciting food scene and, if you so desire, sampling the dispensaries. 

Read the rest here.

NY Times spotlights Denver as city on "sunnier side" of economy

The New York Times profiled Denver as a city on "the sunnier side" of the U.S. economy.

Excerpt:

The Denver metropolitan area has become a showcase of the sunnier side of the American economy. While the region has some inherent advantages, like a spectacular landscape that beguiles outdoor enthusiasts, Colorado had long been held back by a dependence on natural resources as its economic base.

Its transformation into one of the most dynamic economies in the country was led by local business leaders and government officials, who took advantage of existing assets while also raising taxes at times to invest in critical transportation links, development-friendly policies and a network of colleges and universities.

"It's the outcome of really about 30 years of diversifying our economy" away from fossil-fuel industries and military contractors, said Tom Clark, chief executive of the Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation. "In the 1980s, we were Coors, carbon and the Cold War."

Read the rest here.

PC Mag spotlights Denver startup Flowhub

PC Mag profiled Denver-based Flowhub, a startup that makes software for the cannabis industry.

Excerpt:

The cannabis industry made $5.4 billion in 2015. Legally. That's $5.4 billion worth of businesses growing and cultivating plants, processing and shipping products, and selling marijuana, cannabis oil, and all manner of edibles at dispensaries. That figure is forecast to hit $22.8 billion by 2020 according to the latest State of Legal Marijuana Markets Report from ArcView Market Research and cannabis-focused data analysis firm, New Frontier. The cannabis industry's booming economy needs technology to function, and Flowhub is one of the companies creating hardware and software for businesses at every step of that process pipeline.

. . .

"You have a lot of people coming into this business from the black market, some who were growing for maybe 20 years illegally," said Sherman. "They're not used to best practices and standard operating procedures. A lot aren't technically inclined, either. Our goal as a company is to make compliance easy for the end-user so that, no matter what, people are staying compliant. The metrc system is the way we're going to legitimize cannabis in the United States."

Read the rest here.

Forbes picks five reasons to visit Denver now

Forbes ran a story on "5 Reasons You Should Plan a Trip to Denver Right Now."

Excerpt:

A Hot New Hub

The new Union Station debuted in July 2014 as one of the trendiest spots for restaurants, bars, shops and a hotel. While this operational train station has been open since 1881, it underwent a massive transformation as part of an effort to revitalize the declining area.

It will become even more of a can’t-miss spot in the energetic LoDo (Lower Downtown) district when a new 22.8-mile commuter rail between the station and Denver International Airport starts service on April 22. The 30-minute ride into the city will remedy the city’s lack of public transportation options from the airport to its downtown core and the station will act as a hub for all travelers.

Read the rest here.

Econsult Solutions blogs on Denver transit transformation

Econsult Solutions President Richard Voith blogged about Denver's transit-oriented transformation.

Excerpt:

In 1990, The City of Denver had 468,139 people, and 237,926 jobs. Downtown Denver was a sleepy place largely devoid of people in the evening. Only a handful of people lived downtown back then.
 
The area surrounding the downtown was, like many cities, home to low and moderate income residents while growth was concentrated in the suburban towns surrounding Denver: the eastern suburb of Aurora became the third largest city and the western suburb of Lakewood became the fourth largest. The Denver metropolitan area was a decidedly auto-oriented place; there was no rail transit in Denver and its once proud Union Station was in disrepair, seeing only one long-distance train each way per day.
 
But Denver created a vision; note the active tense. Local leaders sought to make the Denver metropolitan area into something great. They decided to build a new airport and a new transit system. In the early 1990s, Denver took its first steps towards establishing a light rail transit system in the region, and in 1994 the Central Corridor, a light rail line through Denver's Five Points district, opened without the aid of tax increases or federal funds. The same year, the Regional Transportation District (RTD) received permission from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to begin preliminary engineering and environmental impact statement for the Southwest Light Rail Project. In 1996, the FTA awarded $120 million which was augmented by $18 milling in Highway "flex" funds for the new light rail line. Construction began in 1997 and the line opened in July of 2000. Denver never looked back.

Read the rest here.

Mic casts Denver as "unexpected startup mecca"

Mic published a piece on Denver's emergence as a startup "mecca."

Excerpt:

"There's largely a rejection of burnout culture here in Colorado," Espeland told Mic. "When you go to the coasts, you often see people working 20 hours a day and sleeping in their offices. Here, we value not doing that, and we believe that actually makes us move faster."

This environment is one of the reasons why Denver has quietly become one of the fastest-growing startup meccas in the United States. In 2015, Denver startups attracted more than $822 million in venture capital funding, with companies in the technology, energy, food and marijuana sectors leading the way. The city also routinely ranks as one of the best cities to live as a millennial, and young people from across America are flocking to the state in record numbers to build Denver-based business.

Perhaps the most remarkable part of the Denver success story is that much of the city's growth has taken place in only the past five years.

Read the rest here.

NY Times looks at local push at dual-brand Hyatt in downtown Denver

The New York Times reported on the dual-brand Hyatt House/Hyatt Place in downtown Denver in a story on the national trend towards local art and culture at budget hotels.

Excerpt:

In Denver, the new Hyatt Place and Hyatt House Denver/Downtown, combining a budget business hotel and an extended-stay option (from $149), recently opened with lobby décor that defies brand norms to include an art installation made of snowboards, another made of climbing ropes, and a third of wood harvested from trees killed by pine beetles. Several pairs of locally made Icelantic skis are on display, and interested guests are directed to buy them from a shop nearby.

Read the rest here.

Technical.ly says Denver startup scene is at "tipping point"

Technical.ly came, saw and said Denver's startup scene is at a "tipping point."

Excerpt:

Denver's early IT sector developed out of telecom, government security and a unicorn or two. Celebrations of Denver's millennial boom and ensuing entrepreneurship boom all come with requisite mentions of the city's outdoor lifestyle, with its few hour drive to rich skiing and closer still to hiking and rock climbing. Josh Swihart, the cofounder of Aventeer and the CEO of Aspenware, joked that some of his team might get snowed in their homes on workdays yet be able to make it out to ski.

That fits neatly with ideas that Denver is a strong hub for digital health and fitness startups  -- more than 125 of them are in Denver, many of which may take space at the forthcoming Catalyst Health-Tech Innovation space.

Read the rest here.

WSJ takes winter trip to Denver

The Wall Street Journal ignored the ski resorts and reported on a family vacation to Denver.

Excerpt:

THERE IS A single line of purple seats at the Colorado Rockies' Coors Field, indicating a height of 5,280 feet above sea level. Such reminders that you're in the Mile High City are never far away in Denver, but this town has quietly risen above its reputation for thin air, bearded skiers and a mega-hub airport; it's now equally known for world-class food along with insane vistas and other outdoor pursuits that don't involve $160 lift tickets. My family has its little secret go-to spot in the Caribbean, but the kids wanted to try something new this winter, so we decided to give Denver a few days to win us over.

Chloe, an amateur photographer, is a sophomore at NYU. Sam is a sports-loving high school pitcher, and Jonah, 12, had to be torn away from his computer to make the flight. My wife, Leslie, a super-healthy foodie, headed up planning.

Denver isn't really in the Rocky Mountains. It's more of a base camp at their edge: the last flat spot to pitch your tent as you head west for gold. All of the visitor literature warns that you will get winded walking up stairs and tipsy on a single beer, but, given our mild, touristy level of physical exertion, all the thin air did was stoke our appetites, which was fine, because Leslie had a long list of restaurants she wanted to try.

Read the rest here.

Grantmakers in the Arts spotlights Bonfils-Stanton

The organization showcased Bonfils-Stanton Foundation's initiatives and accomplishments in a blog post.

Excerpt:

Bonfils-Stanton is excited to be fostering dialogue on diversity and equity in the arts by convening community conversations on how arts organizations can better serve more diverse audiences. President and CEO Gary Steuer wrote a recent blog post detailing their efforts to enhance arts engagement with diverse communities. He writes:
 
The goal was to elicit honest dialogue about the barriers and successes of engaging diverse audiences… I think we all recognize -- the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation included -- that this can be difficult work. It can sometimes be uncomfortable, it can take us out of our comfort zone, and to do it right sometimes requires significant institutional change.
 
Two projects worth highlighting -- both in dance -- would be their partnerships with Wonderbound and Cleo Parker Robinson Dance. The Foundation was instrumental in guiding the evolution of Wonderbound, a modern dance company committed to working with live music performed by local musicians of all types and integrating other art forms from poetry to visual arts. Wonderbound has embedded itself as an agent of change within a community perceived as challenged, the epicenter of Denver's homeless population.

Cleo Parker Robinson Dance is Denver's most prominent African-American cultural organization with a national and international profile. The Foundation just recently committed to a significantly increased level of support (a 400% increase!) in order to invest in building a stronger infrastructure to enhance development, communications, and the operations of their school and theatre.

Read the rest here.

Tomorrow Tour coming to Denver Feb. 3

Technical.ly's Tomorrow Tour is coming to The Commons on Champa on Feb. 3.

Excerpt:

On Feb. 3, [Erik] Mitisek will be leading an innovation case study at Tomorrow Tour Denver, a stop on a national event series inspired by Comcast NBCUniversal and organized by Technical.ly. The series aims to explore and document how technology and innovation converge to strengthen the city. A free evening roundtable and networking event will connect local entrepreneurs, technologists, policymakers and new thinkers for discussions about the future of innovation and entrepreneurship. A key focus will be how to better articulate Denver's innovation stories and improve the economy.

"Colorado is becoming the undisputed technology and innovation hub between the coasts," Mitisek said. "Tours like this help get our message out of the community and reinforce the depth of great companies, founders and leaders in Colorado. This event is unique as it provides a forum, across industries, for leaders to convene and discuss the important topics for us to continue to build a next-generation entrepreneurial community."

Read the rest here.

Yahoo! Travel explores Denver

Yahoo! Travel experienced some of Denver's more unusual attractions.

Excerpt:

Instead of opting for a hotel in Denver, I chose an Airbnb that was actually more like a share house. Traveling solo, I wanted to make sure I'd be able to easily meet new people, and staying in the West Colfax neighborhood in this five-bedroom house meant that after a day's exploration I always had people to hang out with. This was hands-down my favorite Airbnb I've ever stayed in. It was also a two-block walk from the light rail, and a ten-minute train ride to downtown.

Read the rest here.

PeopleForBikes names Arapahoe Street one of 10 best new bike lanes

Bicycling advocacy group PeopleForBikes pegged the protected lane on Arapahoe Street downtown as one of "America's 10 best new bike lanes for 2015."

Excerpt:

If only these plastic posts could talk. This one-mile project was languishing as a line on a map until the Downtown Denver Partnership business advocacy group, inspired by a trip to Copenhagen and a wave of demand for better biking among downtown tech firms, rallied public support by creating a one-day demo and leading a successful crowfunding campaign that kicked off with an anchor donation from oil company Anadarko, among others.

The $36,000 raised through Ioby.org convinced Denver leaders that the public had their back. With their green light, city staff threw themselves into Arapahoe and its couplet street with a passion, rethought their bidding process and cut the ribbon this month, less than a year after approval. Like Queens Boulevard, it's a national model for quick-build street projects.

Read the rest here.

CNN calls Denver "best beer town"

A CNN column argued Denver was the best beer city in the U.S. and backed it up with nine sudsy features.

Excerpt:

[I]f you're looking at the question through the bottom of a glass of craft brew -- and these days, who isn't? -- the argument usually boils down to two cities; Portland, Oregon, and Denver, Colorado.

For me, the answer is easy: the Mile High City trumps them all.

Read the rest here.

NY Times hits Denver "Weedstock"

The New York Times reported on the inaugural National Cannabis Summit in Denver.

Excerpt:

If the $97 million in tax revenue that Andrew Freedman, Colorado's director of marijuana coordination, expects the state to earn this fiscal year cannot be described as a game-changer to a state whose all-funds budget for the fiscal year ending in June was $27 billion, you wouldn’t know it from the resultant swirl of activity.

If you have a layover at the Denver airport, you can, for about $300, hire a car to take you to a dispensary and then smoke in the vehicle (as one website puts it: "no driving sweeeeeeet"); there are also meals with cannabis pairings, and cannabis-infused bubble baths.

This thing could be bigger than cellphones and cupcakes.

Read the rest here.

Inc. spotlights 10 fastest-growing companies in Denver

Inc. published a piece on Denver's fastest-growing companies from its annual Inc. 500 list.

Excerpt:

10. Tender Belly

At No. 698, this company is bringing home the bacon -- in more ways than one. A specialty pork seller, Tender Belly has a 2014 revenue of $4.3 million and a three-year growth rate of 649 percent. Co-founder Shannon Duffy credits a foodie culture in Denver for Tender Belly's success. "I think that one of the reasons it blossomed out here is that people appreciate more good stuff, and less crap," he says.

Read the rest here.

Wisconsin State Journal probes "peak beer" at GABF

The Wisconsin State Journal probed the idea of "peak beer" at Denver's annual Great American Beer Festival.

Excerpt:

There are a lot of places to get a sense of how awesome the craft beer world is right now: the bottle shops, overflowing with new beers; the business pages, with story after story of expansion; the want ads, burgeoning with new positions in small breweries; a barstool, one of my favorites.

But nothing brings it home like the Great American Beer Festival.

The ultimate beerfest, put on by the Brewers Association, this year featured more than 3,500 beers being poured by more than 750 breweries Sept. 24-26. The judging portion of the festival saw more than 240 judges evaluating more than 6,800 beers and bestowing honors in 92 style categories, including eight Wisconsin brews. In a letter in the GABF program, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock described it as "the largest collection of beer on tap in the history of the world" -- again -- and about 60,000 people passed through the doors of the sleek downtown Colorado Convention Center.

Read the rest here.

Tech Cocktail chronicles Denver Startup Week

Tech Cocktail covered a few of the high points of the second day of the 2015 installment of  Denver Startup Week.

Excerpt:

At one point today I pulled out my phone expecting to see the clock ticking around 10:00 AM, but I was floored to see it was past 12 noon. Where did the first half of the day go? Time really does fly when you’re having fun, and the Denver Startup Week content was, obviously, fixating.

Everything began with the "How To Write Killer Copy And Connect With Customers" session at Galvanize. In fact, it was hosted by a crew of Galvanize’s own: Mark Saldana -- Marketing Manager, Bo Moore -- Storyteller and former WIRED writer, and Dynelle Abeyta -- Content Producer.

. . .

What really blows my mind about Denver Startup Week is that, despite having over 215 events, sessions, keynotes, and panels planned, everything seems to go off without a hitch. So, after day two, I wanted to salute the hard work of all the people behind the scenes who operate the light boards, setup the events, and keep the schedule flowing forward – without them none of us could enjoy this rich content. Thank you to all, I’m looking forward to yet another fun filled day.

Read the rest here.

CleanTechnica showcases green retrofit at Byron Rogers building

CleanTechnica showcased an impressive energy-efficient retrofit at the Byron Rogers building in downtown Denver.

Excerpt:

The Byron Rogers building, located in downtown Denver and owned by the U.S. General Services Administration, is a model of how deep energy retrofits can create more efficient, financially valuable, and more productive workspaces.

The anticipated building energy use savings when compared to ASHRAE 90.1 2007 is expected to be 55 percent, which equates to approximately $500,000 per year in savings. Many of the strategies developed and implemented laid the groundwork toward the 2030 net-zero benchmarks. Now that the building is fully occupied, these savings can be verified. The building uses several leading edge and synergistic energy conservation measures, including chilled beams, a thermal storage system, superinsulated walls and windows, and LEDs.

Read the rest here.

The Comedy Bureau approves of High Plains Comedy Festival

Los Angeles comedy blog The Comedy Bureau gave Denver's High Plains Comedy Festival a glowing review.

Excerpt:

As you might imagine, we don't get out of LA often or, really at all since there is so much to cover around the scene. 

However, last month, we found our way to Denver, Colorado for the 3rd Annual High Plains Comedy Festival and we sure didn't regret taking a week to explore the ins and outs of comedy in Denver. The Grawlix, which created the upcoming truTV series Those Who Can't, rose to their current station from Denver and following in their stead is a great bunch of comics operating in what seems to be a well-balanced eco-system of comedy.

Read the rest here.

Forbes names Jennifer Jasinski one of top 10 female chefs in U.S.

For National Women's Equality Day, Forbes named Denver's Jennifer Jasinski of Rioja, Bistro Vendome and Stoic & Genuine one of top 10 women chefs in U.S.

Excerpt:

Jennifer Jasinski, Stoic & Genuine, Denver, Colorado

Reality television fans know chef Jasinski from her turn on season five of Top Chef Masters, on which she was a finalist, but Coloradans have long been intimate with her culinary ability from her four acclaimed restaurants, which include Rioja and Euclid Hall, at which she showcases her technique-driven, super-seasonal food. A James Beard Foundation award-winner for Best Chef Southwest in 2013, Jasinski toiled for her toque in several of Wolfgang Pucks's highly demanding kitchens, including Spago, long before chef whites were chic.

Read the rest here.

Denver seen as transit model for Miami

A letter to the editor of the Miami Herald said Denver's transit system offers a target for the Florida city.

Excerpt:

How did Denver do it?

Experts conducted research, united behind well-defined goals, engaged the best partners and won public confidence by presenting achievable plans. They prioritized based on the best available data rather than political interests, selected the best partners through fair, transparent processes and negotiated agreements focused on best value and not only lowest cost. They did this in record time and now have one of America's most livable big cities.

Miami is no less deserving or able. Let's not waste another minute.

Read the rest here.

Chronicle of Philanthropy spotlights Bonfils-Stanton

The Chronicle of Philanthropy profiled the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation and examined its focus on the arts in Denver.

Excerpt:

In late 2012, the foundation’s board decided to go all in. It hired Gary Steuer, then Philadelphia’s chief cultural officer, to lead the transition.

Although the foundation is relatively small -- it made $3.5 million in grants during the last fiscal year -- Mr. Steuer believes it can be a leader in Denver by attracting support from other funders.

"The breadth and quality of the cultural sector in Denver has grown exponentially over the past 20 years," he says. "At the same time, the philanthropic growth has been in foundations that explicitly exclude arts and culture."

Read the rest here.
 

GlobeSt.com probes Denver development

GlobeSt.com story says Denver office and retail development are lagging.

Excerpt:

"Denver has added jobs over the past several years," he says. "During the recession, they lost 260,000 jobs. Since then they've added 690,000. And we've seen employment growth in a variety of sectors.” Those sectors include healthcare, tech and construction, reflecting a diversity and a move away from the one-horse reliance on oil and gas, as we've reported elsewhere in this series. And, of course, jobs means retail.

The area to watch isn't the hot LoDo district, which Chang says has actually been a CBD focus of growth for years, but the up-and-coming River North, or RiNo area, which is currently transforming a creaky stock of industrial buildings into an artsy neighborhood packed with trendy restaurants.

But retail construction isn't equally hot; in fact Chang describes it as "Paltry. We've been seeing annual construction in the 500,000-square-foot range. To put that into perspective, in 2008 they were pushing three million square feet a year. So we're running about 20% of peak, and it's been that way for a couple of years."

Read the rest here.
 

Architect Magazine reimagines DPAC

Architect Magazine rethought the Denver Performing Arts Complex's architecture in a feature story.

Excerpt:
 
Still, the performing arts center lived up to its initial critical acclaim, both artistically and economically. In the 1980s, as downtown Denver continued to struggle, the complex proved to be a major draw for city dwellers and suburbanites alike. That's still true. In 2013, according to an economic impact study, more than 781,000 patrons attended performances and events at DPAC. Of those, 77 percent came from outside the city. DPAC's total impact on Denver's economy, according to the study, was estimated at $141 million a year.

More than 35 years after it first opened, however, DPAC is showing its age. As the city booms -- since 2000, Denver's downtown population has increased from 7,000 to 19,000, with more on the way -- the complex, though still popular, has become something of an urban design relic. With help from New York-based H3 Hardy Collaboration Architecture, city officials are in the process of reimagining the center. A master plan is due by the end of the year. It's a complicated, politically charged assignment, but if done well, will bring a new center of vitality to downtown Denver.

Read the rest here.

Bloomberg wonders where all the middle-class rentals have gone in Denver

Bloomberg Business asked where all the middle-class rentals went in Denver.

Excerpt:

Ryan Dravitz and a roommate shared a spacious apartment in Denver, paying $1,200 a month for 1,200 square feet in a high-rise building a mile from the center of downtown. Then, in 2012, the rental market exploded. The roommate moved out, and Dravitz, 26, moved into a house with four others. His old apartment is now renting for $2,000.

"Luckily, I got engaged recently, so we have a dual income," said Dravitz, a bank teller and freelance writer and editor. Even so, it's unlikely the couple will be able to afford to stay downtown, where rents are rising rapidly, and new rental buildings with such amenities as golf simulators and dog spas are becoming increasingly common.  

Skyrocketing rents and multiple roommates -- these are the kinds of war stories you expect to hear in space-constrained cities such as New York and San Francisco. But the rental crunch has been steadily creeping inland from coastal cities and up the economic ladder.

Read the rest here.

WSJ covers Denver "property boom"

The Wall Street Journal ran a story about Denver's development frenzy and the next addition to the skyline: the 40-story 1144 Fifteenth.

Excerpt:

The Mile High City's skyline is getting a glassy new addition, the latest sign that the U.S. office sector is strengthening beyond just large coastal markets.

Hines, a Houston-based developer, on Tuesday broke ground on 1144 Fifteenth, a planned 40-story office tower one block southeast of Denver's historic Larimer Square. The 640,000-square-foot structure will feature 10-foot ceilings and glass walls, open floor layouts, several ledge terraces, a 5,000-square-foot fitness center, and a mezzanine level with a fireplace and seating for informal gatherings.

The addition comes as Denver's vacancy rate was 12.9% in the first quarter, down 0.56 percentage point from its year-ago level and near its lowest point since 2008, according to CBRE, a commercial real-estate company.

Read the rest here.

Zagat tabs Union Lodge No. 1 among best new bars in U.S.

Zagat named Denver's Union Lodge No. 1 among the best new bars in the U.S.

Excerpt:

Prohibition-era glam pervades this new Downtown speakeasy where mixologists Kasey Zuhlke and Alex Daniluk, most recently of the Arvada Tavern, pour classic cocktails to savor. The drink booklet, highlighting 20 libations, all rooted in the 19th century, is inked with the black-and-white sketches of every cocktail, along with the history, primary ingredients and flavor profiles of each drink. Fun fact: the vintage flag hanging above the bricked bar has 38 stars, an homage to August 1, 1876, the day that Colorado was the 38th state to join the Union.

Read the rest here.

Milwaukee Business Journal looks at Visit Denver ad campaign

The Milwaukee Business Journal reported on Visit Denver's billboard blitz in Beertown.

Excerpt:

They're not quite mile-high, but billboards promoting Denver have become an unavoidable lure for impressionable Milwaukeeans.

"We're not stealing them," Jayne Buck said. "We're just borrowing them for a little bit and sending them back."

The vice president of tourism for Visit Denver, the city's tourism and marketing bureau, explained that their research showed Colorado is a popular destination for Milwaukeeans and Midwesterners. The billboards are part of a new marketing campaign that expands on the larger markets of Dallas, Houston and Chicago targeted by Visit Denver in the past.

Read the rest here.

WSJ profiles Denver firm's Bakken "oil factory"

The Wall Street Journal profiled Denver-based Liberty Resources' petrol "factory" in North Dakota.

Excerpt:

The future of the U.S. oil industry may well be taking shape north of this town on 15 square miles of windswept prairie above the Bakken Shale. It’s about as far from the industry's wildcatting heritage as is thinkable.

"Our idea was to build the world's greatest oil factory," says Chris Wright, the chief executive of Liberty Resources LLC. And if the U.S. oil industry is going to overcome several significant challenges, it may have to follow the lead of this small Denver-based company.

Read the rest here.

Medium publishes critique on Denver growth

Medium published a critique on Denver growth by local writer Nate Ragolia.

Excerpt:

Today, we’re somewhere near the peak of an incredible real estate boom in the Mile High City. Rents are soaring (just this year mine increased 15%) and the housing market is a shark tank in which first-time buyers are the chum. We applaud our city for its popularity, and its continued success while most of the country stagnates in slumping markets… but we shouldn’t. Denver is missing its last opportunity to become a world-class, 21st Century city. It’s choosing, instead, to be an average, 20th Century American city, and that means we all lose out on something special.

The insurgence of outside real estate investors and costly condo developments, and luxury apartments in the near-Downtown neighborhoods are killing Denver. This boom needs corresponding moderately priced and affordable housing companions, but neither can be found. The Near-Downtown neighborhoods, once gritty and creative, loaded with passion to make our city an artistic and musical mecca are choking out their young, in favor of high-priced developments and suburb-employed commuters. Vibrant, resurgent and diverse neighborhoods are getting facelifts, but the underlying substance is being swept away. On the balance sheet, this is progress, but it means Denver may become another failed commuter metropolis, packed with discontented and alienated citizens.

Read the rest here.

Bloomberg: Denver on "front lines" of spec office development

Denver is leading a resurgence of office development without tenant commitments, according to a Bloomberg story

Excerpt:

"Denver is one of those areas that are on the front lines of office spec development," said Jay Despard, managing director for Colorado of Hines. "In places like Denver, as opposed to San Francisco or New York, employers can maintain an employee base at a lower cost. And, alternatively, when younger individuals are coming out of graduate or undergraduate programs, they move somewhere with a lower cost of living."

Read the rest here.

WSJ spotlights rising rents in Denver

The Wall Street Journal reported on Denver's escalating rental market.

Excerpt:

Apartment dwellers in New York, San Francisco and Boston often pay more in rent than average Americans spend on monthly home-mortgage payments.

Is it time to add Denver to that list?

Read the rest here.

Des Moines Register covers making of domino card for Denver law firm

The Des Moines Register covered the making of a holiday video card made by toppling a Denver replica made with 6,000 dominoes for Otten Johnson Robinson Neff + Ragonetti.



Here's the final video.

Permalink here.

NPR reports on Denver culinary ascension

National Public Radio covered Denver's rising dining star.

Excerpt:

When you think of the restaurant scene, Denver probably doesn't come to mind. But that's just the latest change for a city whose population has ballooned in the last couple of years, thanks in part to a nearby oil and gas boom. Top chefs are beginning to take notice.

Award-winning pastry chef Keegan Gerhard, for example, just opened a new location of his restaurant, D Bar, that is three times the size of his old one. His chef buddies wonder why he's in Denver.

"Listen, everybody in my industry, certainly all of my [Food Network] TV colleagues [say]: 'Like, really Keegan? Really? Denver? What, are you afraid to compete? What, is your food not good?' Like, I've heard it all," Gerhard says.

Read the rest here.
 

Zagat pegs Troy Guard as one of "America's Next Restaurant Moguls"

Zagat named Troy Guard of TAG/Bubu/Los Chingones fame one of America's next restaurant moguls.

Excerpt:

Born in Hawaii, and a kitchen disciple of Roy Yamaguchi, Troy Guard's culinary career has taken him all over the world, including San Diego, Hong Kong, New York and, eventually, Denver, where he now presides over seven restaurants (an eighth is on the horizon). The trailblazing chef and restaurateur shows no signs of slowing down, having opened two back-to-back restaurants in 2014 alone.

Read the rest here.

2014 Denver Startup Week breaks records, 2015 dates announced

The 2014 Denver Startup Week drew nearly 8,000 participants to 180 events. The 2015 edition is scheduled for Sept. 28-Oct. 2.

Excerpt:

Denver Startup Week came to a close September 19, 2014 after five action-packed days where expectations were exceeded for the third straight year and the highest level of participation was achieved. Over 7,800 startup community members engaged in over 180 events celebrating everything entrepreneurial in the Mile High City. With over 700 companies involved in events, seminars and panels over a period of five days, this year’s event saw even more energy, community engagement, enthusiasm and collaboration.

Dubbed the largest free entrepreneurial event of its kind in the entire country, Denver Startup Week 2015 plans are already underway with the event scheduled to take place September 28 – October 2, 2015.

As Denver Mayor Michael B. Hancock stated at the Kickoff Breakfast, "Denver has quickly become the 'Startup Capital of the World.' Places like Galvanize, Industry and others have really created this space, along with all of you, and that says Denver is simply the place to be. If you are entrepreneurial, if you are innovative, we want you to bring your humble and creative energies to our great city."

Read the rest here.

Thrillist pegs Osteria Marco best pizzeria in Colorado

Thrillist named Frank Bonanno's Osteria Marco at Larimer Square the best pizza place in Colorado in a 50-state roundup.

Excerpt:

Osteria Marco (address and info)
Denver
One of Denver's premiere restaurateurs opened up this pizza place, and it's a passion project. Mozzarella is made in-house, and pizzas don't conform to any particular style -- it's all his own.

Read the rest here.

High Country News ponders Denver's energy boom

"Is Denver the Houston of the Rockies -- again?" ponders High Country News, referencing Dynasty in the process.

Excerpt:

These days you can ride the light rail into lower downtown, an area that was half rail yard, half urban blight back when Dynasty was wrapping up, and look up at the bright blue sky reflected in the facades of brand new, steel and glass residential/office/retail buildings. A gleaming white arc-like structure stretches over the stop for the Amtrak trains, and beyond that, the century-old, but beautifully refurbished Union Station rises up, it’s neon telling you to "Travel by Train." The vibe is futuristic hip, a far cry from that old quasi-Houston feel.

Or maybe not. See that new energy-efficient building adjacent to Union Station? It is the headquarters for Antero Resources, one of the top oil and gas companies drilling in the Marcellus and Utica shale plays in the East. Apollo Exploration employees look out at all the new buildings from a couple blocks away. Noble Energy and Encana Oil and Gas have offices on the other side of downtown; in between are Anadarko, Halcon Resources, EOG Resources, QEP Resources and plenty more. One estimate has 30 percent of Denver’s downtown office space occupied by oil and gas industry workers.

Read the rest here.

Downtown Denver Partnership releases startup report

For Denver Startup Week, the Downtown Denver Partnership released data on the city's vibrant startup scene.

Excerpt:

"The numbers speak loud and clear, Downtown Denver is the place that creative, innovative and passionate people want to be to grow their startups," said Tami Door, President and CEO of the Downtown Denver Partnership. "The center city has an incredible entrepreneurial energy that invites people to get engaged and think big, and we will continue to provide the resources and tools that help entrepreneurs and startups succeed in our community."

The numbers, which focus strictly on the core boundaries of Downtown Denver, show that: 
  1. Downtown Denver is home to 373 startups employing 3,108 employees
  2. Almost $200,000,000 in funding was raised by Downtown Denver startups in 2013
  3. 7.5% of Downtown Denver businesses are startups, and over 80 new startups were formed in 2013
Read the rest here.

Vote for the hottest startup for Denver Startup Week

Tech Cocktail wants your vote for Denver's hottest showcasing startup from a lineup that includes Cloud Elements, My Dealer Service and Crono. The winner will be announced during Denver Startup Week on Sept. 18.

Excerpt:

Hi Denver, Tech Cocktail wants your vote for your city’s hottest startup. The winner will be announced at the upcoming Mixer and Startup Showcase at Denver Startup Week event on Sept. 18th at Cowboy Lounge. This event is a great opportunity for you to hear about new startups and make important connections with industry leaders. Get your tickets and don’t forget to vote NOW for your favorite Denver startup!

Read the rest here.

Tech Cocktail hypes Denver Startup Week

Tech Cocktail called Denver Startup Week "pure magic" in the run-up to the 2014 edition of the annual event.

Excerpt:

Pure magic is happening in Denver.

Three years ago a group of entrepreneurs, business owners, city leaders and volunteers led by Ben Deda, Tami Door, and Erik Mitisek got together with the seed of a simple idea: shine a spotlight on the Denver tech community. This simple thought has rapidly grown into the largest free entrepreneurial event in North America: Denver Startup Week.

For the third year in a row the entrepreneurs of The Mile High City will rally around business, design, technology, and manufacturing from September 15-20 to raise awareness of the great happenings within their community.

Read the rest here.

Dallas Morning News spotlights Union Station in Denver reuse roundup

Union Station, The Source and the Renaissance Denver Downtown City Center got props in a story about urban renovation and adaptive reuse in the Dallas Morning News.

Excerpt: 

Who said you had to knock down yesterday's treasures to create today's desirable destinations? Old meets new in Denver, where a revitalization trend is in full effect.

...

Denver Union Station

Then:
 Transportation hub
Now: "Denver's new living room"

Fresh off a massive facelift, the newly revamped Denver Union Station is more than the place you go to catch the Amtrak downtown. In addition to hosting heavy rail, light rail and a 22-bay bus terminal, this busy transportation hub now features a contemporary hotel, locally owned restaurants, quirky retail and a 40,000-square-foot outdoor plaza.

Read the rest here.

Planetizen takes stock of Denver placemaking

Dean Saitta of University of Denver cast a critical and analytical eye in a piece on Denver placemaking at Planetizen.

Excerpt:

I was struck by the silence at both events regarding Denver’s status as an income-segregated city. According to the research of Richard Florida and colleagues (see here and here), Denver ranks #9 in income segregation among large American metros. It's running neck-and-neck with Dallas for last place among major American cities with the smallest percentage of homes available for purchase (around 15 percent) in the least expensive tier of housing. Denver’s cost of rental housing is also among the highest in the nation. Given Denver’s income-segregated landscape, it's curious that only passing reference was made in the Confluence Denver discussion to a project that has great potential to both socially de-segregate and spatially re-connect the city: the site of the former University of Colorado Health Sciences Center (UCHSC) campus in east-central Denver. Jesse Adkins of Shears Adkins Rockmore Architects had this to say about the challenge of developing the former Health Sciences campus:
"That's a tough one to solve…"Lots of issues and big problems. These buildings have been there for 100 years. The street grid exists. There are ingredients you can pull into it. It's one of those nodal opportunities what could continue to fill in gaps around the city."
Adkins is right, especially his point about the campus site presenting a "nodal" opportunity. The site is located at the nexus of multiple neighborhoods (around 9th Avenue and Colorado Boulevard) that, according to the most recent census data, are sharply divided by class and culture. In fact, the site is pretty much smack dab in the middle of Trent Gillaspie’s cheeky "Judgmental Map of Denver" pictured below. This means it presents a great opportunity to address multiple citizen needs.

Read the rest here.

 

The Atlantic's CityLab dissects Denver transit transformation

The Atlantic's CityLab called Denver's transit system the "most advanced" in the West, but noted locals need to loosen their grip on their car keys.

Excerpt:

It's a vision straight out of a transportation planner's fondest dream.

In the center of the metropolis, the Beaux-Arts façade of a grand old railway terminus, finished in robin egg-hued terracotta stone, is cradled by the daring swoop of a canopy of brilliant white Teflon. On one of eight tracks, a double-decked passenger train has stopped to refuel. A few hundred yards away, German-built light rail vehicles arrive from distant parts of the city, pulling into a downtown of soaring condo towers and multifamily apartment complexes. Beneath the feet of rushing commuters, express buses pull out of the bays of an underground concourse, and articulated buses shuttle straphangers through the central business district free of charge. A businessman, after swinging his briefcase into a basket, detaches the last remaining bicycle from a bike-share stand next to the light rail stop, completing the final leg of his journey-to-work on two wheels.

An out-of-towner could be forgiven for thinking she'd arrived in Strasbourg, Copenhagen, or another global poster child for up-to-the-minute urbanism. The patch of sky framed in the white oval of the Union Station platform canopy, however, is purest prairie blue. This is Denver, a city that, until recently, most people would have pegged as an all-too-typical casualty of frontier-town, car-centric thinking.

Read the rest here.

ID8 Nation dives into entrepreneurship in Denver

ID8 Nation, a publication from the Kauffman Foundation, looked at entrepreneurship in Denver.

Excerpt:

Here are five lessons we learned from Denver's entrepreneurial success.

Give. Don't worry about get.

As busy as they are, entrepreneurs are incredibly generous with their time, mentoring others, answering emails from strangers, appearing on panels etc. This is true everywhere, not just in Denver, but the Mile High City seems to carry it to an extreme. Maybe it hearkens back to the frontier days when neighbors were always borrowing barbed wire and bolts of calico from each other. Whatever the reason, Denver's startup community embraces newcomers and is quick to offer whatever help is needed. That makes success more likely and helps attract talent from out of state.         

Get to know your neighbors.

Boulder has always captured the entrepreneurial spotlight in Colorado, while Denver, six times as large and the state capitol, went relatively unnoticed. Did Denver develop a case of civic envy or try to lure Boulder startups away? No. It's linked up with Boulder, learned from its example, provided space for companies that outgrow the smaller city and is prospering alongside its neighbor.      

Make sure the beer is good.

Yes, good beer is one of two liquids essential to startup success (coffee is the other), but this speaks more to the importance of making a city a great place to live and work. Denver has always had the Rockies and sunshine, but the city has transformed itself in the past 20 years into the No. 1 destination of Millennials, due largely to the lifestyle. Entrepreneurs will work in the cities where they want to live.

Read the rest here.

Entrepreneur tabs Denver as top startup city

Entrepreneur named Denver as a top alternative to Silicon Valley for launching a tech startup.

Excerpt:

2. DenverA healthy startup ecosystem includes companies of all maturity levels, whereby ones that have grown from shoestring outfits to market leaders might reinvest in the community. And Denver has businesses in fast-growing industries and companies large and small, young and mature. Denver-based businesses like HomeAdvisor, now a subsidiary of IAC with 1,200 employees, participate in community-building events like Denver Startup Week.

At the center of Denver's startup activity is Galvanize, a 30,000-square-foot entrepreneurial campus including a venture capital funding firm, as well as collaborative co-working space and a social hub for events and education. Companies with origins in the Denver area include Mapquest, Photobucket, Rally Software, Cloudzilla and Forkly.

Firms like Grotech Ventures, with offices in Denver, are financing startups and are joined by large Boulder-based funds like the Foundry Group.

Read the rest here.
 

WSJ publishes "Insider's Guide to Denver"

The Wall Street Journal published an "Insider's Guide to Denver" with tips from MCA Denver's Adam Lerner, Rioja's Jennifer Jasinski and other local luminaries.

The city is a magnet for outdoor-lovers, thanks to its proximity to the mountains, its 200-plus parks and (by some estimates) 300-plus days of sunshine per year. From City Park -- home to the Denver Zoo, the 1908 Prismatic Electric Fountain and the Denver Museum of Nature & Science -- to Washington Park, where the city goes to run and cycle, there is always something to do. And, most likely, a sunny day to do it.

You can also rack up miles by strolling from one cool neighborhood to another. Lower Downtown, or LoDo, a national model for how to balance preservation and development, is awaiting the midsummer completion of renovations to the Beaux-Arts Union Station. Across the South Platte River is LoHi (Lower Highland), a flourishing neighborhood, packed with bars and restaurants, that attracts empty-nesters as well as young professionals. In once-industrial RiNo, or River North, warehouses and factories have been turned into artist studios, galleries and even wineries like the Infinite Monkey Theorem.

Read the rest here.

Re/code looks at Denver startup scene

Re/code recently looked at the Denver-Boulder startup scene.

Excerpt:

It's hard to miss a pattern that has emerged in the current crop of tech startups either going public, being acquired or getting funded in recent months: While the majority have been based in Silicon Valley and San Francisco, a fair number have also come from Colorado.

It has been about a year since Boulder-based Rally Software, a company that supplies software development tools in the cloud, raised $84 million in an IPO. More Colorado companies are likely headed down the IPO pipeline: Denver-based Ping Identity, which supplies software to help companies manage the login credentials of their employees, raised $44 million in a Series F last year in anticipation of an IPO that could happen this year. And just last week, Twitter acquired Boulder-based Gnip, a supplier of Twitter’s data stream, after it had raised about $7 million in two funding rounds.

While it's no Silicon Valley, Colorado's venture capital community is gaining momentum. Today the state's leading venture capital organization will announce a new conference called the Colorado Venture Summit to be held on June 19 that's intended to promote new business in the Rocky Mountain state, where VCs have invested roughly $3.5 billion since 2008.


Read the rest here.

WSJ covers banking problems in cannabis industry

The Wall Street Journal recently covered the banking issues in the cannabis business in Denver.

Excerpt:

At Good Chemistry, a sleek marijuana shop near downtown Denver, owner Matthew Huron stocks an ATM with cash. Whenever a customer makes a withdrawal, the machine transfers money from the customer's account into Mr. Huron's account.

Having already lost 10 bank accounts, Mr. Huron also uses cash to pay every conceivable bill. He even paid a contractor $1 million in cash to build a warehouse for his business.

"What really bothers me is that we are working so hard to be good corporate citizens," he said. "And yet they stop everything at the bank. It's irrational."

Read the rest here.

Travel + Leisure pegs Euclid Hall on list of best beer bars

Travel + Leisure put Denver's Euclid Hall on a list of the country's best beer bars.

Excerpt:

"Beer Bitches" Jessica Cann and Jules Bouchard's expert sourcing have made this brick-walled 1863 landmark building one of the best beer halls in all of Colorado -- and according to Food & Wine, one of America's best gastropubs in one of America’s best cities for foodies. Locals belly up for 12 taps, beer cocktails, and an extensive menu of bottles and cans quirkily ranked by mathematical difficulty ("Arithmetic" session beers to strong, complex dubbel bad boys under "Quantum Mechanics"). Bestsellers like Boulevard’s Tank 7 Farmhouse Ale and Avery IPA get paired with way-above-average bar bites by James Beard-nominated Top Chef Masters star Jorel Pierce. euclidhall.com

Read the rest here.

Business Insider names "26 Coolest Small Businesses in Denver"

Business Insider catalogued "The 26 Coolest Small Businesses in Denver," ranging from Rockmount Ranch Wear to Denver Kush Club to Denver Patio Ride to The Brown Palace.

Excerpt:

Like its residents, the small businesses of Denver are pretty cool.

They're finding clever new ways to bring a unique, local flavor to the city's food, retail, and services businesses.

The aptly named Mile High City is also a pioneer, sparking debate and new ways of thinking about America's drug culture. On January 1 it became legal to buy marijuana in Colorado without a prescription, which has inspired a growing number of cannabis-friendly companies and services.

From food trucks to barbershops, Denver's laid-back attitude is exemplified in its small businesses.

Read the rest here.


HuffPost looks at Denver's lessons for healthy living

Huffington Post recently looked at Denver's pursuit of health and happiness.

Excerpt:

Football team aside, Denverites have quite a few things to be smug about, especially when it comes to city residents' health and well-being.

It may explain why everyone seems to want to move there. Denver is experiencing a boom lately. The city is the second-fastest growing in the country, with a 5 percent population growth between 2010 and 2012 alone. What's more, the downtown area is particularly primed, growing at five times the national rate.

Read the rest here.

Fodor's highlights five Denver eateries

Fodor's Travel recently higlighted "5 Restaurants to Watch in Denver."

Excerpt:

1. Root Down Den

You don't even have to leave the airport to find on-trend eats upon arriving in Denver. The newly opened Root Down in Terminal C at Denver International Airport -- sister restaurant to the original Root Down downtown -- brings a taste of globally influenced cuisine and a cool, eclectic atmosphere to travelers. The space features reclaimed materials (like illuminated globes suspended from the ceiling, a living wall with mint and other herbs, and salvaged airplane instruments). Vegan and gluten-free options abound: Standouts include sweet potato falafel, edamame hummus, and country-fried tofu with beet and fennel slaw.

Read the rest here

Bloomberg looks at Denver's real-estate boom

Bloomberg covered Denver's booming real-estate market. Sources cited affordability and quality of life, as well as big companies eying the market for investments and office space.

Excerpt:

Lyndsey and Sameer Lodha had their pick of cities to call home after Sameer, a former equities trader who’s now a hand surgeon, got several job offers upon completing his residency.

The couple passed on New York, where Sameer lived when he worked at Goldman Sachs Group Inc., and San Francisco because both were too expensive. They chose Denver, moving into an apartment with their 16-month-old daughter in August.

"We wanted green and outdoor space but we don’t want to live in the suburbs," said Lyndsey, 34, an anesthetist. "Denver has both. Lots of open spaces, great school options and a very vibrant city life. And it’s affordable."

Read the rest here.

USA Today covers GABF

USA Today covered Denver's Great American Beer Festival.

Excerpt:

There's no bigger display of the ever-expanding varieties of beer than the 32nd annual Great American Beer Festival, conducted in Denver this week, by The Brewers Association. Judging includes more than 3,100 beers from 624 U.S. brewers.

Mega-brewers such as Anheuser-Busch and MillerCoors participate, too, but "it's the craft brewers' showcase," says Buettner. Mad Fox, which opened in 2010, has won medals each year and submitted the maximum of 10 beers for this year's competition.

Read the rest here.

WSJ covers ex-Qwest CEO Nacchio's time in prison

Joe Nacchio, the disgaced ex-CEO of Qwest, talked to the Wall Street Journal about his four years in prison for insider trading.

Excerpt:

Prison also offered the CEO, who once was surrounded by highflying telecom executives before his prosecution for insider trading in 2007, a new set of peers: drug offenders Spoonie and Juice, and a bunkmate named Spider.
 
"I trust Spoonie and Juice with my back. I wouldn't trust the guys who worked for me at Qwest," said Mr. Nacchio, in his first interview since he was fully released from custody Sept. 20.

Mr. Nacchio is among the first white-collar executives to be set free after a decade of aggressive crackdowns by federal investigators to rein in shenanigans at public companies. He remains as combative as ever, insisting he never committed a crime, while describing his experience in prison as something akin to "Lord of the Flies, for grown-ups."

Read the rest here.

Tech Cocktail looks for Denver's hottest startup

Tech Cocktail asks, "Who is Denver's hottest startup?" The site is hosting a showcase to pick the winner on Mon. Sept. 16 to kick off Denver Startup Week.

Excerpt:

Tech Cocktail has traveled the country, from Dallas to DC, Boise to Boston, uncovering the hottest startups in more than 20 cities.  Now, the word is out: winning startups from each city will go onto the next round and get the chance to qualify for Tech Cocktail Celebrateour new national startup competition held in Downtown Vegas on October 23 – 25.

Denver, here’s your chance to show us what ya got!  Join us at McNichols Building for an evening of Denver’s hottest early-stage startups and cocktails with your neighbors and technophile friends.

Read the rest here.

Movoto gives 30 reasons to move to Denver

Movoto blogged about "30 Reasons You Need to Move to Denver."

Excerpt:

5. Work and Play Downtown? Yes, Please!

Lower Downtown or "Lodo" is a true living and working part of the city. Many people that enjoy loft and apartment living with everything at their fingertips flock to live down there. The nightlife downtown is incredible and the ability to walk home after dinner and a show or just to be able to get to work without transportation is a huge plus.

Read the rest here.

Crain's Detroit Business talks to DDP's Tami Door

Tami Door, CEO of the Downtown Denver Partnership, sat down for a Q&A with Crain's Detroit Business.

Excerpt:

What have you been up to since you were honored as a 40 under 40 award winner? In February of 2005, I moved to Denver to accept a position at the Downtown Denver Partnership. I also am chairwoman of the Auraria Higher Education Center Board of Directors and of the Denver Commission on Homeless. I also co-founded and co-chair theDenver Startup Week and launched the Rocky Mountain West Urban Leadership Symposium. Last year I was named "9 News Leader of the Year," which recognizes leaders who made a significant contribution to the well-being of Colorado.

What's next? I'm very focused on city building and further advancing our downtown area plan. We have upcoming plans to redevelop the16th Street Mall and update its infrastructure, as well as a comprehensive urban parks plan. We want to build downtown Denver as a hub for entrepreneurship.

Read the rest here.

NY Times blogs about Biennial of the Americas

The New York Times highlighted the art of the Biennial of the Americas, kicking off this week in Denver.

Excerpt:

Carson Chan, one of four curators, is no stranger to art biennials in unexpected places: the Berlin resident, who was born in Hong Kong and raised in Canada, was behind the successful resurrection of last year's Marrakech Biennale. For Denver, the 33-year-old decided to take the art out of the museum and into the streets. Under the title "Draft Urbanism," 30 artists are turning downtown Denver into a two-month-long outdoor exhibition that will include artwork on billboards and public signage by Julieta Aranda, James Franco, Cyprien Gaillard, Liam Gillick, Laurel Nakadate, Jeremy Shaw, Isabella Rozendaal and more. The show will also include large-scale urban installations by four different architecture studios. Shortly before the opening, Chan discussed the peculiarities of Colorado’s capital and why this may be the first biennial with its own beer.

Read the rest here.

NewsWorks reports on new Bonfils-Stanton chief

Gary Steuer is leaving the Philadelphia Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy to become President of the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation in Denver, NewsWorks reports.

Excerpt:

Philadelphia's chief cultural officer is on the way out.

Gary Steuer, chief cultural officer and director of the city's Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy since 2008, will be leaving Philadelphia to lead the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation in Denver.

Steuer says he will miss the vibrant arts and cultural activities in Philadelphia.

Read the rest here.

Cheba Hut CEO in Q&A with Entrepreneur magazine

Cheba Hut CEO Scott Jennings works from Denver (the company HQ is in Arizona). He answers questions about franchising, legalization and helming the country's only marijuana-themed restaurant franchise in the June issue of Entrepreneur magazine.

Excerpt:

What type of franchisees do you look for?

We don't want to deal with the type who just wants to throw money at us. You know there's a lot of money out there, but not a lot of cool money. Most people with money just want to make more money. Absentee franchisees are fine, but they still have to care about the experience. A lot of people see the weed thing an they're out. But you don't have to smoke weed to own or eat at a Cheba Hut.

Read the rest here.

Global Cities Initiative releases report on Denver

The Global Cities Initiative released a report on Denver in a series covering "The 10 Traits of Globally Fluent Metro Areas" at a June 26 event, "Going Global: Boosting Metro Denver's Economic Future."

Excerpt:

This hi-tech mix creates spillovers that complement Colorado’s broader space and aerospace economy, the second largest in the country and home to four military commands, eight major space contractors, and more than 400 aerospace companies and suppliers. The region is second among the 50 largest metro areas for total private aerospace workers with19,600 people employed in the sector. Of that growing cluster, Denver has developed a particular niche in the satellite-based services segment, housing firms such as DISH Network and sister company EchoStar Corporation.

Denver and the surrounding Northern Colorado region concentrate dozens of federal research institutions, research universities, and private research and development laboratories. These assets have attracted and developed a highly educated workforce needed to fuel the region’s innovation economy: 38 percent of residents have completed a bachelor’s degree or higher, compared to a national average of only 29percent. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s recent decision to open a satellite office in Denver reflects the region’s important role in the national innovation ecosystem.

Beyond the benefits of its clusters and specialties, the Denver metro area has also capitalized on its status as the largest city in the Mountain West region. As the largest metropolitan area within almost 600 miles, Denver is a natural center for business and professional services for companies throughout the region. This industry not only provides the plurality of employment to the region (239,000 jobs) but also is the largest driver of job growth, with payrolls in the sector growing at 3.8 percent annually.

Read the rest here.

The Beat reviews Denver Comic Con 2013

The Beat says the explosive growth and popularity of Denver Comic Con overwhelmed the event in 2013.

Excerpt:

On the upside, many of the con attendees (and a tremendous number in cosplay) are actually being patient and simply biding their time to make the best of it.They are very excited to be at DCC and enjoying the whole fandom experience of a new con in Colorado.

I’ve never abandoned a con before, but today it happened. When I finally gained access to the panel hallways, with minutes to spare, in order to cover them as a journalist, I found that the panels I was looking for had been cancelled or moved to a later time. Looking at the waits to get onto the floor (unprecedented in my experience of quite a number of cons), it wasn’t worth the suffering in my opinion. I’ll try again later, but for now the massive, speedy growth of Denver Comic Con has defeated its best intentions and also for now, defeated my own enthusiasm for con-going. It’s only Saturday midday out here in Denver, and things may improve, but as a journalist, I’m not getting much done in what I came here to do.

Read the rest here.

Two Denver bars named to Esquire's "Best Bars in America"

The Ship Tavern and Williams & Graham made Esquire's 2013 edition of the "Best Bars in America."

Excerpt:

Ship Tavern, tucked away in the historic heap of bricks that is the Brown Palace Hotel, is at that peculiar stage in a fancy joint's life when it wants to be a dive. It's not decrepit per se, but you can feel the gravitational pull of decrepitude. Somehow that's alluring. Maybe it's because that same black hole is pulling on us every single day. In any case, it is very pleasant to drink your (large) cocktails here (stick to the basics) amid the head-scratching, comprehensive nautical decor (in Denver?), which dates back at least to the 1930s.

Read the rest here.

Salon reports on National Adaptation Forum in Denver

Salon recently reported on the National Adaptation Forum held in downtown Denver in April, focusing on adapting to the new environments brought on by climate change.

Excerpt:

On the opening morning of the inaugural National Adaptation Forum, I was eating breakfast at a stand-up table in the exhibition hall when a mustachioed man of middle age plopped his cherry Danish next to my pile of conference literature, a mess of pamphlets and reports with titles like Getting Climate Smart: A Water Preparedness Guide for State Action, and Successful Adaptation: Linking Science and Policy in a Rapidly Changing World. The nametag dangling above the Danish identified the man as Michael Hughes, director of public works for the Chicago suburb of Elmhurst. Like many attendees, Hughes was part of a new national emergency-response team without being fully aware of it. He had arrived in Denver knowing little about "adaptation," the anemic catchall for attempts to fortify our natural and built environments against the epochal temperature spike in progress.

“I hadn't even heard the term 'adaptation' a month ago,” he told me, taking a bite.

He didn’t know anything about the 20 federal agencies that just released adaptation planning studies, or the dozen coastal states negotiating the early stages of "managed retreat" and “coastal abandonment,” buzzwords for the work, underway from Puget Sound to Brighton Beach, of accommodating rising seas by contracting the contours of the U.S. map. Hughes didn’t know about any of this. He just knew that the Elmhurst sewage and water systems were buckling under the strains of the new normal, and that his job was figuring out what to do about it. "The floods keep coming, they keep getting worse, and every time there’s damage, everyone blames me," he said. "I’m here to learn more about what’s happening, and talk to people dealing with the same problems."

Read the rest here.

Colorado Real Estate Journal covers Denver projects in Obama's 2014 budget

The Colorado Real Estate Journal reports on two projects in metro Denver that are identified in the federal budget for 2014, including $15 million for work on the Byron White U.S. Courthouse downtown.

Excerpt:

"By investing in our public buildings, a smaller federal footprint and improved border crossing stations, GSA will not only create savings for the American people, but also assist in providing them with the most efficient and effective government possible," said GSA Acting Administrator Dan Tangherlini. "The president’s budget will ensure that federal agencies can support economic and job growth in communities across this country."

Two projects in the Denver metro area were specifically identified in the budget, including a request for $13.9 million for ongoing remediation work to multiple sites at the Denver Federal Center in Lakewood. Under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act Consent Order Program, the state of Colorado requires cleanup of these sites. The remediation effort has been ongoing for the last 10 years and the funding request will complete the required work.

GSA also is requesting $15 million for a project at the Byron White U.S. Courthouse at 1832 Stout St. in Denver.

Read the rest here.

The Atlantic Cities covers Denver's move towards density

In The Atlantic Cities, Eric jaffe penned an in-depth piece on transit-oriented development in Denver.

Excerpt:

In a recent special issue of the journal Cities, geographers Keith Ratner of Salem State University and Andrew Goetz of the University of Denver report that transit-oriented development in the FasTracks era has already had a measurable effect on the character of the city. After analyzing TOD data from around the city, Ratner and Goetz conclude that increased density near transit stations — one of the primary objectives of the regional plan — is "clearly evident":
While Denver still remains a relatively low density city that relies heavily on the automobile and highway transportation, there has nevertheless been a clear change in regional policy that is encouraging more transit and higher-density transit-oriented development and that change in policy is having a recognizable impact on Denver’s land use and urban form.
Denver's recent success is encouraging for all U.S. metros, largely because the city followed a typical path in the 20th century. During a period of intense sprawl and transit failure, between 1950 and 1990, the city's population density shrank from 4,741 people per square mile to 3,309. Since reversing course in the mid-'90s, however, density is back around 4,000 people per square mile.

Ratner and Goetz attribute much of that change to a successful TOD campaign that focused on five key goals: placing homes, jobs, and retail near transit; creating a mixture of transportation, housing, and shopping options; capturing some of the business value of transit for the city; emphasizing "place-making" strategies; and ensuring that transit stations were entry portals to a truly regional network. From 2000 to 2010, T.O.D. development made up a considerable chunk of all regional development (9 percent of all residential growth, 11 percent of retail, 15 percent of office).

All told, Denver has created some 18,000 residential units, 5.3 million square feet of retail, and 5.4 million square feet of office space within a half mile of transit station, Ratner and Goetz report.

Read the rest here.

Forbes spotlights downtown Denver

Forbes just showcased Denver's textbook downtown revitalization as the lead for its look at urban cores from coast to coast.

Excerpt:

Take Denver. Civic and business leaders began work on the city’s Lower Downtown neighborhood in 1989 with the issuance of $240 million in bonds. Today LoDo is a trendy ‘hood of over 100 restored Victorian warehouses and buildings filled with art galleries, boutiques, local eateries and nightclubs. Now  Denver is in the midst of a 20-year, seven-mega project plan to expand the revitalization efforts through the rest of the downtown district.

"We carefully evaluate what the future workforce is looking for and we incorporate those demands into what we are building," asserts Tami Door, chief executive of the Downtown Denver Partnership. Those demands span pedestrian walkways, a bike path grid, and "green" housing complexes comprised of smaller units, typically rentals. Residential buildings chock-full of amenities like fitness centers aren’t in the cards. "This group doesn’t want to necessarily come into the development and lock themselves in at night; they want to be out connecting with the community so they want amenities near their homes," stresses Door.

The investments seem to be paying off. Denver, relative to the rest of the county, has been a faster growing city, with a population growing by about 1.3% per year, according to Moody’s Economy, and a 2012 that clocked 2.4% job growth and 3.3% economic growth.

Read the rest here.

$7 billion hospitality boost attracts World Property Channel

Denver’s $7 billion, 10-year investment has had a profound impact on the city attracting visitors and media from all over the country.

Excerpt:

Over the past decade, Denver has spent more than $7 billion to upgrade its hospitality infrastructure. The airport is now the fifth-busiest in America. The downtown, once in a state of neglect, is now considered one of the most walkable in America. The Denver Performing Arts Complex is the second-largest facility of its kind in America. And the country's newest light-rail system links it all together.
 
There are over 300 restaurants downtown, representing cuisines from every corner of the world - including many with farm-to-table Colorado cuisine. The Fort Restaurant sits in red rocks at the base of the mountains - and serves more buffalo than any restaurant in America. The Wynkoop Brewing Company is in an 1888 building filled with wood and wagon wheels, featuring locally-sourced buffalo and elk, as well as a dozen of its own craft beers. It's also Denver's oldest brewery, founded some years back by Colorado's current Governor, John Hickenlooper.
 
There are over 200 different beers brewed here, in fact, making Denver "The Craft Beer Capital of America." Coors Brewery, just outside of town, is the largest in the world. And there are 24 wineries on the Front Range
 
Read the rest here

The Atlantic recognizes Denver retail stronghold -- I Heart Denver Store

Does anyone living in Denver not know how I Heart Denver Store Proprietor Samuel Schimek helps expose all things Denver? If they didn’t, they do now. 

Excerpt:

David Rasmussen has been designing and handcrafting custom wooden furniture for more than 15 years, building everything from cabinets to tree houses. Recently, the Carbondale, Col.-based craftsman and his team have also begun experimenting with developing product lines, such as wooden plates and bike shelves. "We're refining the process," he says. "We're getting really good at making things."

He is one of more than 130 Colorado artists spotlighted at the I Heart Denver Store, located at the Denver Pavilions in the heart of the Downtown District. The shop features a broad mix of handmade artwork, apparel, and other products by independent Colorado artists and creators, including those who are just launching their careers as well as veterans of the state's arts scene. I Heart Denver Store is dedicated to supporting that community: 70 percent of all sales go directly to the artists each month.

"I love their business model," says Rasmussen. "They only take a 30 percent margin, where normally it's much higher. It helps artists reinvest in their work."

Read the rest here.

Denver kicks off first Startup Week

Denver’s an “undiscovered gem of opportunity” experiencing an entrepreneurial renaissance and is on track to become the country’s No. 1 place for entrepreneurs. This is what the city’s entrepreneurs had to say at Startup Week, which hosted thousands of people and more than 70 events. We happen to agree. 

Check out the video.  

 

 


New York Times celebrates Denver’s pedestrian mall

The New York Times celebrates what Denver did with the 16th Street Mall, a pedestrian walkway rivaled by other U.S. city builders.

Excerpt:

There were balloons and free cookies, stickers and speeches on Tuesday to mark the 30th birthday of a pedestrian mall that runs through the heart of this city’s downtown. The mayor read a proclamation, office workers hustled past with late-morning lattes and a few homeless men shadowboxed with the celebratory red-and-white balloons.

So goes life along Denver’s mile-long 16th Street Mall.

For all its vitality and new development downtown, Denver is still a city in search of an icon. It has no Golden Gate Bridge, no French Quarter, no Empire State Building. The snow-capped Rockies float like a mirage off to the west, far beyond the city limits. What Denver has, instead, is the mall.

Read the rest here.

Inc. lists Denver as one of the nation's top start-up capitals

Inc. magazine recently listed Denver as one of the nation’s top start-up capitals due to quality of life, reasonable cost of living and supportive community. 

Excerpt:

Brady Becker, co-founder of the popular food and restaurant discovery app Forkly, worked in Silicon Valley for around two years and tried commuting from San Francisco 45 minutes each way and even living on a sailboat, which was cheaper (albeit colder). 

"Occasionally I would dock closer to the office to shorten my commute," he says.

The close proximity to the mountains for biking and skiing, a laid-back pace of life, and more than 300 days of sunshine a year all encourage a healthy work-life balance. 

"Denver itself has walkable neighborhoods with new microbreweries and restaurants popping up all over town," Becker says.

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