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101 Community Change Articles | Page: | Show All

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.


Must read: The Nation magazine sheds a suspicious light on the Interstate 70 upgrade plan

The Nation presents a dark take on how the government's plan to bury sections of Interstate 70 in Denver could destroy the character of historic neighbohoods. In short, residents lose and real estate investors win.

"The CDOT’s plan would condemn 56 homes and 17 businesses—a more extensive use of eminent domain than was required for the construction of the highway in the first place. It would also sever the neighborhoods during the decade of construction and open them to land-grabbing by developers."

The plan, the story contends, is an update of redlining because it would make many homeowners ineligible for FHA mortgages. 

"It already appears to be working. In addition to direct displacement by eminent domain, home values in GES have increased by 68 percent in the last two years (compared to 30 percent in the rest of Denver). This has displaced the neighborhoods’ renters, who are uniquely precarious—over 50 percent have no lease at all—as well as longtime homeowners who cannot afford the increased property taxes. The stormwater component of the plan also places Globeville back into the 100-year floodplain, making homeowners ineligible for FHA loans. The redlining returns."

Read author Caroline Tracey's full report here.
 

Albuquerque asks: Why are our people moving to Denver?

The Albuquerque Journal wanted to know why so many folks from Albuquerque have transplanted themselves to Denver lately.

New Mexicans are moving here despite what the story describes as "long traffic jams on major roads that put Albuquerque’s commuter woes to shame and a median home cost that’s double Albuquerque’s."

The economy has a lot to do with it:

"Unemployment in New Mexico has ranked as one of the highest in the nation, registering 6.4 percent in June. Colorado, meanwhile, has been shattering its own state records, with a 2.3 percent rate in June. Colorado and North Dakota have the lowest in the nation."

But there's more, as one of the interviewed transplants, Andrew Webb, notes:

“There is a sense of vibrance and positivity,” Webb said. “It’s very exciting here right now.”

Read the entire report here.


 

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

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

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

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

The training is real -- and funded:

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

Read the whole story here.

 

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.


 

PBS NewsHour covers "Mi Tierra" at DAM

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

Excerpt:

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

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

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

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

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

Watch and read the rest here.

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

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

Excerpt:

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

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

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

Read the rest here.

AP story delves into the history and present of Five Points, Denver's "Harlem of the West"

The Associated Press story looked at the rich legacy of jazz, African-American history and the neighborhood's modern-day boom.

Excerpt:
 
Denver's Five Points isn't the only historically black enclave changed by population shifts and revitalization. In New York, neighborhoods like Harlem and Brooklyn's Fort Greene have lost black residents as rents have risen. Seminal black-owned landmarks, like Harlem's Lenox Lounge, have shuttered. Activists in Houston's Freeman's Town have worked to prevent brick streets laid by former slaves from being uprooted despite development pressures.

On the other hand, some of Five Points' new businesses are opening in storefronts that have long sat empty, and they're making an effort to recognize the neighborhood's roots.

The 715 Club, founded by the son of a Pullman porter at the corner of Welton and 26th, had been closed for years before a 2016 reopening. "We are a neighborhood bar in the heart of 5 Points trying to preserve a piece of Welton history," the new owners say on their Facebook page.

Read the rest here.

NY Times covers I-70 expansion controversy

The story delved into the environmental and health hazards associated with the project.

Excerpt:

Each morning Yadira Sanchez and her three children awaken to the roar of traffic and the plumes of exhaust that spill from the highway that cuts through their neighborhood.

Now, Ms. Sanchez and her family are confronting a plan to triple the width of this state's main east-west artery, sending tens of thousands more cars by their door.

Denver was the fastest-growing large city in America in 2015, with a population of nearly 700,000, and the scene of a tech and marijuana boom that has drawn 1,000 new households a month. But as in other cities, its highways have not kept up with development. Many roads are crumbling, leaving officials with decisions that will have lasting effects on the families living nearby, including residents of Elyria-Swansea, a low-income and overwhelmingly Latino community still reeling from the road's construction back in 1964.

Read the rest here.

U.S. News & World Report pegs Denver second-best city to live

After topping the list in 2016, Denver was second to only Austin in 2017.

Excerpt:

To clarify a common misconception, Denver is not a mountain town. It actually takes at least an hour to drive to the Rockies. But there are some great places for recreating within a 30-minute drive of downtown, such as Red Rocks Park and Cherry Creek State Park.  

Some might say that Denver is experiencing a gold rush of a different color: green. After Colorado residents voted to legalize recreational marijuana in 2012, Denver has seen a surge in cannabis-related commerce, from dispensaries to magazines to high-tech paraphernalia like vaporizers, rolling papers, lotions and storage containers -- and the industry is just gaining speed. 

Read the rest here.

LinkedIn ranks Denver fourth in U.S. for worker migration

The LinkedIn Workforce Report ranked Denver after Seattle, Portland and Austin.

Excerpt:

Seattle, Portland, Austin, Denver, and Charlotte gained the most workers over the last 12 months. For every 10,000 LinkedIn members in Seattle, 68.2 workers moved to the city in the last year  -- mostly from San Francisco, Chicago, New York City, and Los Angeles.

Seattle, Portland, Austin, Denver, and Charlotte are all cities that have a lower cost of living than cities like New York and San Francisco, and have access to the great outdoors. This is a trend we’re keeping an eye on. 

Read the rest here.

Government Technology looks at DPS Imaginarium

Government Technology magazine reported on Denver Public Schools' Imaginarium in a feature on innovation in education.

Excerpt:

At the other end of the spectrum is the imaginarium, an innovation lab launched last year by Denver Public Schools. Part of its reason for being is to counter traditional approaches to improving education, explained Peter Piccolo, director of innovation at the lab. "My colleagues are making sure the trains go down the tracks while I'm trying to build the rocketship," he said. 

There's also a big difference in the amount of money that governments are willing to spend. Gregory couldn't put a number on the cost of his program, but it probably amounts to little added expense. The cost of provisioning space on CalCloud is low. There is also the cost of the manpower of the developers. Currently, any other expenses are coming out of the state's enterprise IT fund, which already supports approved IT projects that are developed in the lab. But the program is brand new, and the state is still discussing how projects might be funded in the future, said Gregory.

The imaginarium, on the other hand, is a big investment. It has a staff of 20 and a budget this year of almost $6 million, with about $3.8 million coming from the school district and $2 million from philanthropies, according to Piccolo. 

Read the rest here.

Christian Science Monitor reports on GrowHaus

Christian Science Monitor covered The GrowHaus, a nonprofit indoor farm in Elyria-Swansea.

Excerpt:

"How can we say that we have this amazing, healthy city, and boast our outdoors life, but we have these communities that don’t have access to healthy food?" says Coby Gould, executive director and cofounder of The GrowHaus. "We are a food-based organization, but ultimately we’re a community development organization -- and we use food as the tool, food as the lens."

The GrowHaus is based in a rehabbed, 20,000-square-foot space that was formerly a flower distribution center. It's surrounded by factories, highways, and rail lines, and the whistle of a freight train interrupted Mr. Gould's comments.

Read the rest here.

Fox News spotlights Denver women brewers making a statement

"Makin Noise: A Pussy Riot Beer" was first produced in December at Goldspot Brewing.

Excerpt:

Female brewers in Denver, Colo. are taking a stand against oppression, sexism and anti-LGBT sentiments by collaborating to produce a series of craft brews that will be released leading up to president-elect Donald Trump's inauguration later this month. 

The first batch of "Makin Noise: A Pussy Riot Beer" was produced on Dec. 28 at Goldspot Brewing. Kelissa Hieber, Goldspot's head brewer and one of the group's key organizers, told FoxNews.com that the goal of the project isn't about promoting anti-Trumpism (though she admitted to Westword that many felt "defeated" and "helpless" after the election) but rather to foster unity among likeminded individuals and beer lovers.

"Despite a kneejerk reaction to assume that an inauguration day release insinuates a protest to Trump, however our only desire for this beer to to insight a larger sense of community and to stand up against injustice," Hieber said.

Read the rest here.

NY Times explores real estate in RiNo

RiNo's development boom was the subject of a recent story in the New York Times.

Excerpt:

Among the unconventional work spaces and restaurants in the district, known as RiNo and north of downtown, is Comal, a lunch spot with Latin American cuisine where women from low-income backgrounds are learning how to run a business. In RiNo's recently opened Denver Central Market, shoppers can grab a sandwich, coffee or fresh fish,or sit at a bar and take in the scene.

The neighborhood has attracted artists who helped gentrify the old and neglected industrial expanse, which in its dilapidated condition was long considered the back door into downtown from westbound I-70.

Business promoters now want to create an international trade hub in the district and are ready to capitalize on what they see as one of Denver's last development frontiers. The developer Sean Campbell and World Trade Center Denver, a nonprofit organization that helps regional businesses, have proposed building a $200 million international business campus in RiNo.

Read the rest here.
101 Community Change Articles | Page: | Show All
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