Back in January we took a look at the 1801 California renovations and learned that the entire ground floor was being remodeled. Brookfield Properties put down 50 million dollars with a vision; to make the second tallest building in Denver more inviting at the street level by opening up the lobby and including street facing retail.
What’s different since the last time we checked in? Glass. This will open the lobby up to much more natural light. You can also see the new ground floor retail space to the right of the lobby entrance. The plaza area is being cleared off so we should see the plaza itself getting rebuilt soon.
This renovation adds a whole new face to 1801 California. You may not see anything different on the skyline but, a real city is not measured by its skyline. It’s measured by how a pedestrian interacts with the built environment at the street-level.
There are a lot of reinvestment and adaptive reuse projects going on around central downtown and I’m going to keep covering them as they come along. On my next post we will take a look at the completed adaptive reuse project at 550 15th Street.
Today we are heading over to Capitol Hill to look at an adaptive reuse project called Shift Workspaces. The building at 383 Corona Street used to be a very underutilized building with only a couple offices in it. Now, it is used for shared workspaces or coworking. This is an open environment where you can either rent out a desk or cubicle for yourself all the way up to renting private conference rooms and offices for your small business. This space is geared towards small businesses, entrepreneurs, start-ups, and independent professionals who all work together in a very comfortable environment. Not to mention, they even have a small workout room! I had a great opportunity to peek inside thanks to Brian Lantzy of Boutique Apartments. Let’s take a look!
On the ground level you are greeted with a very relaxing, industrial-esque workspace environment. This is primarily where you can rent out a table for a group, or a desk for yourself to get some work done.
Continuing around on the ground floor, you have private conference rooms which have the option to open up via a garage door. The room with the couches is now better utilized by getting converted to an office with tables and chairs.
You will also find a kitchen and common area which is great for networking or taking a break. Did I mention they always have coffee?
Going upstairs, there are cubicles, along more private workspaces. Some workspaces include a secure cabinet for secure storage. There are also configurations upstairs that are made for small groups that may not need an entire office.
Coworking is becoming popular especially here in Denver. Shift is running at full capacity which is a great sign given this is a fairly recent development. Head on over to their website for pricing and additional details.
In the past I have covered relatively small reinvestment projects happening around central downtown such as plaza and lobby conversions. 1600 Broadway on the other hand is getting a complete re-skin.
Built in 1972, standing 352 feet tall, the 27-story building is very dark and prominent along Broadway. The brown, rocky facade that is currently on the building is very dated doesn’t help ‘brighten’ up this area of downtown.
Well, this is all going to change. Weather sealant has started to climb up the building and a sample has been put up in a corner. Look familiar? The building will be very uniform with what is already in place at the ground level.
Construction will go through the summer and should be done by early fall. It will be very interesting to see what this building will look like after it’s complete. For now, enjoy one of the largest re-skins of a building Denver has ever seen!
Today the entire rail system was free giving everyone in the Denver Metro area a chance to ride the new W-Line along with the rest of the system. Along with riding for free, there were little parties at most of the new stations along the W-Line.
At each station, there were various things to see and do. You could learn about Lakewood’s history or walk down the street visiting various art booths. I was very intrigued about how much talk there was about transit-oriented developments around some of these stations. There were various booths displaying everything from a single building proposals to master plans.
The turnout today was fantastic; not to mention it was a perfect Colorado spring day yet again. Each train was packed with excited people as some were able to see the new route for the first time.
Some stations had live music while others had some very entertaining folks. All in all, it was a great day celebrating the opening of our new W-Line.
I hope you were able to go check out some of the stations and if not, make sure you at least head west and check out the W-Line for yourself!
As many of you already know, one of the new project elements for the W-Line are 4 miles of bike paths running alongside the new tracks. This is a great way to get to many stations along the corridor along with giving you the ability to use both your bicycle and the train when traveling around Denver.
Last weekend I decided to check out the new paths for myself and rode along almost the entire line. Why not the whole line? We’ll get there in a little bit. On this trek out west, I followed route ‘D10′. Use a bit of caution when looking up a map for this route as it hasn’t been updated with the new paths along the tracks. From the Central Platte Valley, I rode the South Platte Trail and headed west when it split just past the Colfax viaduct. Upon heading west, you are greeted with a nicely paved, windy trail through some open space.
Continuing down the path you go through Rude and Sanchez park which have the options of crossing pedestrian bridges to get into the surrounding neighborhoods.
New rail signals have also been put in so pedestrians can safely cross the tracks into the neighborhoods. Not to mention, you get some pretty amazing views of the Denver skyline throughout your journey!
The Sheridan Station’s Park and Ride is still under construction but once you cross through the station, the path continues right alongside the tracks.
At the smaller stations, the bike path splits off so you can board a train. However, the Wadsworth Station was slightly disappointing because you are unable to access the platforms from the bike path. There is a fence that runs along the entire platform with signs telling you the platforms are inaccessible from the path. My fear is pedestrians and cyclists will hop the short fence to get to the platforms.
Once you get to Wadsworth, be prepared for a climb as you will encounter a few hills. Once you get to the top of the hills, the views are worth the climb!
These last three pictures show where the ‘D10′ route branches off to various streets and ends up terminating at the Federal Center. These transfers from path to street happen a few times but as long as you follow the signs you will be riding alongside the train most of the way.
On this one particular route you cannot follow the trains all the way to Golden. That doesn’t mean there aren’t paths and roads that continue following the W-Line but remember, the W-Line crosses the 6th Avenue corridor twice past the Oak Station which makes it a little tricky to follow.
Want to see more photos from my journey? Head on over to my Flickr set here, or click through the slideshow below!
Make sure you go check out these bike paths on one of these nice spring days and ride along with the trains! It’s a great adventure!