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NY Times covers I-70 expansion controversy

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


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.

WSJ dives into Denver Water reservoir project

The proposed expansion of Gross Reservoir near Boulder was the topic of The Wall Street Journal's story.


Next year, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is expected to decide whether to issue a permit to triple the capacity of Gross Reservoir in the Rocky Mountain foothills, with additional shipments of about 18,000 acre feet of water a year from the Colorado River watershed. An acre foot is enough water to meet the annual needs of an average family of five.
That is one of the last regulatory barriers for utility Denver Water's $380 million project, for which district officials say they hope to break ground in 2019 to help ensure local water supplies.

"We have an obligation to supply water," said Jeff Martin, Denver Water's manager of the project, as he stood recently atop a 340-foot concrete dam that is to be raised by 131 feet under the plan. "It's not an option to not have water."

Read the rest here.

Wired flies with Denver aerial photographer Evan Anderman

A slideshow of shots by the Denver-based photographer showcase little-seen Colorado landscapes on the plains, and in the foothills and suburbia.


Think of Colorado, and you probably picture the snow-capped peaks of the Rockies. But nearly half of the state lies on the high plains to the east of the mountains. The terrain is no less scenic, especially when seen from above.

"I love looking at the landscape and understanding how everything fits together," says Evan Anderman, who spends hours taking aerial photos from the cockpit of his plane, 1,500 feet above the plains.

His gorgeous images, taken during some 200 flights, capture the breadth of the plains and its industry. Fields of wheat, millet, and hay wave in the breeze. Cattle graze on rangeland. Factories, mines, and oil rigs dot the land. "Every square inch out there has been affected [by industry] in one way or another," Anderman says.

Read the rest and see the slideshow here.

13th Floor tops HauntedHouse.com's list of best haunts in U.S.

The 13th Floor in Denver topped HauntedHouse.com's list of America's Best Haunts for 2016. The sister haunt, The Asylum, ranked fourth.


Haunted houses have long been a tradition of Halloween, evolving from basic tents and street fairs to the sophisticated spook factories of today featuring Hollywood-quality make up and special effects. Around the nation, long lines of thrill-seekers pay in a range from $20 to $50 per ticket for an hour or more of controlled fright. According to research about the business of haunted houses, this industry made popular through the late 1990s and early 2000 is now growing by leaps and bounds.

America’s Best Haunts was established to honor the attractions that are head and shoulders above the rest.  Any haunt can haunt America but only a select few can proudly proclaim that they have been selected as one of "America's Best."

Read the rest here.

Energy.gov previews the 2017 Solar Decathlon in Denver

A year to the day before the event, the U.S. Department of Energy posted a preview of the Solar Decathlon 2017 to be held in Denver.


Zero-emission electric vehicles charge along the street. People walk along LED-lighted sidewalks. A commuter train drops travelers off from the airport to enjoy dinner at a corner café. And the houses? They're entirely powered by sunshine.

This might sound like a scene from the distant future, but it's not as far away as you think. Exactly one year from today, Solar Decathlon 2017 will kick off in Denver. The biennial competition challenges teams of college students from around the country to design, build and operate beautiful solar-powered houses that are ultra-energy efficient and balance innovation with cost effectiveness. Fourteen Solar Decathlon student teams are now hard at work refining their initial plans for houses designed to provide shelter after disasters, conserve water and achieve other goals.

The Solar Decathlon houses will join the landscape at Peña Station Next, a burgeoning "smart city" between downtown Denver and the airport that city planners began mapping out several years ago. The plan calls for adding 1.5 million square feet of corporate office space, 500,000 square feet of retail stores, 2,500 solar-powered residential units, and 1,500 hotel rooms to the space separating the vibrant urban hub from the nation’s largest airport in total land area.

Read the rest here.

Modern Farmer delves into Super Bowl MVP's chicken coop

Modern Farmer looked into Denver Broncos linebacker and Super Bowl MVP Von Miller's love of poultry.


We may be losing farmers at a pretty scary rate, but we can add one more to the ranks once his football career is over: Super Bowl winner and Denver Broncos' linebacker Von Miller.

According to Yahoo! Sports, Miller -- who's 26 and studied poultry science at Texas A&M -- has a small chicken coop in his 3,000-square-foot backyard, which houses about 40 to 50 birds. (Roosters are his favorite.) He flew out to Valencia, California, to shadow chicken farmers, which you can check out in this Sports Illustrated video below.

Read the rest here.

Dell pegs Denver as no. 8 on its list of "future-ready cities"

Dell ranked Denver eighth on its list of "future-ready cities" in the U.S., sandwiched between Seattle and Portland.


Dell commissioned IHS Economics to find proxy indicators that define those characteristics. The resulting index is a model intended to help decision makers understand what makes certain cities more prepared for future growth.

"We're very confident these cities will grow faster in the next five to ten years than most other cities," said James Diffley, IHS Economics Group Managing Director for U.S. Regional Services.

The rankings revealed no definitive formula for achieving future readiness, though education figured prominently. The top four cities overall were also the top four of cities with the highest percentages of undergraduate and graduate school degrees.

Read the rest here.

Make magazine spotlights AKER

Make reported on Denver's AKER and its DIY kits for urban farming and beekeeping.


AKER has designed a range of products to help people transform their yards, rooftops, balconies, and community gardens into areas for productive small-scale agriculture. The kits’ parts are CNC routed from high-quality, responsibly sourced plywood and take under an hour to assemble. If you live near a makerspace or fab lab with a CNC you can download the source files and make your own!

Read the rest here.

Denver architect Marcus Farr up for film award

Marcus Farr, founder of Denver-based FARR-OARS research studio, is a finalist for the American Institute of Architects' I Look Up Film Challenge for the short film, "Cradle to Cradle," a look at architectural product life cycles.


Hosted by AIA, the Look Up Film Challenge was created to unite both storytellers and the architectural community to share the inspiring stories on the impact of our built world. The following 13 films are the finalists in this creative collaboration and film competition. Now it’s up to you to decide who the People's Choice Award winner is.

See the video and vote here.

CleanTechnica showcases green retrofit at Byron Rogers building

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


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 Guardian's climate change comedy spotlights Denver

The Guardian's climate change comedy video joked that Denver was destined to emerge as a world capital as sea levels rise.


See more here.

CityLab looks at cannabis and energy in Denver

CityLab reported on cannabis and electricity generation and consumption in Denver.


Charge another social problem to the weed game: It's getting too high on cities' energy supply. At least that's the case in Denver, where the recreational marijuana industry is reportedly sucking up more of the city's electricity than it may have bargained for.

Colorado became the first state to legalize recreational weed use in 2012, and the commercial industry has grown exponentially ever since. But that blooming market has placed a huge burden on the grid that distributes electricity throughout the state, particularly in Denver, where the largest cluster of growing facilities exist. The city's 354 weed-cultivation facilities sucked up 200 million kilowatts of electricity last year, up from 86 million at 351 facilities in 2012, according to The Denver Post.

Read the rest here.

NYT covers Denver rainwater spat

The New York Times reported on rainwater ownership in Denver.


When Jason Story bought an old soy sauce barrel to collect the rain dripping from his downspout, he figured he had found an environmentally friendly way to water his garden’s beets and spinach. But under the quirks of Western water rules, where raindrops are claimed even as they tumble from the sky, he became a water outlaw.

Water is precious in the arid West, now more than ever as the worst drought in decades bakes fields in California and depletes reservoirs across the region. To encourage conservation, cities and water agencies in California and other states have begun nudging homeowners to use captured rain for their gardens, rather than water from the backyard faucet.

But Colorado is one of the last places in the country where rainwater barrels are still largely illegal because of a complex system of water rights in which nearly every drop is spoken for.

Read the rest here.

AP reports on Chipotle going GMO-free

The Associated Press covered Denver-based Chipotle's banishment of genetically modified ingredients from its menu.


Chipotle says it has completed phasing out genetically modified ingredients from its food, making it the first national fast-food chain to do so.

The Denver-based chain had already been using mostly non-GMO ingredients, but was working on making final changes to its tortillas.

Read the rest here.

Co.EXIST spotlights open-source urban ag startup in Denver

Fast Company's Co.EXIST highlighted Aker, an open-source urban agriculture startup in Denver.


Another example of the trend: a new Denver-based company called Aker (pronounced "acre"). Aker has six new designs for urban agriculture products, including a two-hen chicken coop, a raised planter bed, and a multi-story worm hotel, and it's prepared to give them away for free so people can develop their own versions. You can download the blueprints from the Aker website, cut your own pieces of wood using a CNC routing machine, and assemble yourself, just as if it were an IKEA product. It won't cost you much more than the price of plywood.

Cofounder Tristan Copley Smith says he wants to spread access to homesteading equipment so more people can raise their own food and live more healthily. "There's a growing interest out there with people wanting to get back to the land," he says.

Read the rest here.
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