Each year, DenverUrbanism’s Ken Schroeppel gives a number of 2-hour “City Transformed” walking tours of different parts of Downtown Denver that are fundraisers for the Denver Architectural Foundation. Ken serves on the Board of Directors of the DAF and the money he raises through these walking tours helps the DAF put on Doors Open Denver and a variety of other programs and events for the public.
The focus of the walking tours, as the “City Transformed” title suggests, is on how the urban fabric of Denver—its streets, blocks, buildings, and public spaces—were formed and subsequently transformed over the decades by various physical, economic, cultural, and technological forces. Cities—and downtowns in particular—are dynamic places, and no where else is that better exemplified than in Downtown Denver. The tours cover a mix of architecture, urban design, city planning, and Denver history while taking a pleasant stroll through a part of downtown.
Tickets are $20 for Denver Architectural Foundation members and $25 for non-members and all proceeds benefit the Denver Architectural Foundation. Each tour is capped at 20 people maximum. The links below will take you directly to the Eventbrite registration page for that specific tour date, where you can purchase tickets with a credit card.
Below is a list of the DAF’s 2017 “City Transformed” tours. Tour location information and other details are provided on the Eventbrite registration pages.
THE CITY TRANSFORMED: DENVER’S UNION STATION DISTRICT
This two-hour walking tour explores Denver’s booming Union Station District from an urban planning and development perspective. Learn about the introduction of the railroad to the Central Platte Valley in the early 1870s; the creation of the historic Union Station building in the 1880s and its expansion in the early 1900s as the city’s bustling gateway to the world; the decline of railroads and the Valley’s crumbling infrastructure and underutilization in the post-WWII era; the decades-long planning effort that led to the area’s remarkable transformation; and the recent transit investments and building boom that have propelled the Union Station area into one of the country’s hottest urban districts.
Sunday, April 23, 2017 | 2:00 – 4:00 PM | Register Here
Sunday, July 23, 2017 | 9:30 – 11:30 AM | Register Here
Sunday, September 24, 2017 | 9:30 – 11:30 AM | Register Here
THE CITY TRANSFORMED: DENVER’S LOWER DOWNTOWN DISTRICT
This two-hour walking tour explores Denver’s historic Lower Downtown District from an urban planning and development perspective. Learn about LoDo as the city’s birthplace near the confluence of the Platte River and Cherry Creek and the development of its streets, blocks, and buildings; the area’s transformation into a warehouse district with the addition of Denver Union Station in 1881; the district’s decline in the post-WWII era into the city’s skid-row; LoDo’s remarkable revitalization through historic preservation and adaptive reuse into the thriving mixed-use district of today; and what the future holds as new developments replace surface parking lots.
Saturday, June 10, 2017 | 9:30 – 11:30 AM | Register Here
Sunday, August 13, 2017 | 9:30 – 11:30 AM | Register Here
Saturday, September 9, 2017 | 9:30 – 11:30 AM | Register Here
THE CITY TRANSFORMED: DENVER’S CENTRAL BUSINESS DISTRICT
This two-hour walking tour explores Denver’s Central Business District from an urban planning and development perspective. Discover how downtown Denver grew and expanded from its early 19th century roots to the modern high-rise city of today and how major interventions like the Skyline urban renewal project in the 1970s, the 16th Street Mall in the 1980s, the Colorado Convention Center and Light Rail in the 1990s, and dozens of infill developments since 2000 have shaped the core of downtown. Special focus will be given to the 43 buildings that make up the Downtown Denver Historic District and how historic preservation and adaptive reuse have preserved many of downtown’s most important and iconic structures.
Sunday, June 25, 2017 | 9:30 – 11:30 AM | Register Here
Saturday, August 5, 2017 | 9:30 – 11:30 AM | Register Here
THE CITY TRANSFORMED: DENVER’S CIVIC CENTER/GOLDEN TRIANGLE MUSEUM DISTRICT
This two-hour walking tour explores the ongoing transformation of Denver’s historic Civic Center and Golden Triangle Museum District from an urban planning and development perspective. Learn about the historic Civic Center Park as one of the nation’s best examples of a City Beautiful era public space, the diverse governmental and cultural buildings ringing the park, recent and proposed museum projects, new infill developments, and other changes planned for Denver’s civic heart that is rich in history, symbolism, and iconic architecture.
Sunday, May 14, 2017 | 2:00 – 4:00 PM | Register Here
Saturday, July 8, 2017 | 9:30 – 11:30 AM | Register Here
THE CITY TRANSFORMED: DENVER’S 14TH STREET
This two-hour walking tour explores the length of Denver’s thriving 14th Street from an urban planning and development perspective. Anchored on one end by the modern Wellington Webb Municipal Building in Civic Center and by the historic storefronts of Larimer Square in Lower Downtown at the other, 14th Street serves as one of Downtown’s most important corridors. Along its stretch, 14th Street offers big-city facilities like the Colorado Convention Center and the Denver Performing Arts Complex as well as a mix of hotel, office, residential, and educational uses in an eclectic array of historic and modern structures along an attractive streetscape. Learn how 14th Street will continue to transform through high-rise developments and transportation investments in the near future.
Saturday, May 20, 2017 | 2:00 – 4:00 PM | Register Here