Spring 2016 Studio to Prepare Speer Boulevard‐Connecting Auraria Urban Design Study

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January 29, 2016

Denver, CO – In the near future, the City of Denver intends to prepare an update to the Downtown Multimodal Access Plan (DMAP), as the original DMAP was completed in 2005. This plan will include, among its many elements, an assessment of Speer Boulevard as one of Downtown’s primary transportation corridors.

In anticipation of that planning process, Ken Schroeppel’s Spring 2016 Planning Project Studio is collaborating with the Downtown Denver Partnership to prepare a Speer BoulevardConnecting Auraria Urban Design Study that investigates the transportation and urban form attributes of Speer Boulevard and makes strategic recommendations consistent with the goals of the Downtown Area Plan. The Speer BoulevardConnecting Auraria Urban Design Study will provide valuable information, insight, and ideas to the Downtown Denver Partnership and the City of Denver for their future work along Speer Boulevard. Throughout the semester, students engage with representatives from the Downtown Denver Partnership, Denver Community Planning and Development, Denver Public Works, Denver Parks and Recreation, Denver Arts and Venues, the Auraria Higher Education Center, and other stakeholders to gather data, solicit opinions and best practices, and to receive critical feedback on the study.

The primary goals for the studio project are:

  • Reimagine Speer as a multimodal Living Street transportation corridor: Identify physical, operational, and behavioral strategies to upgrade Speer from an automobile‐oriented arterial street into a multimodal transportation corridor consistent with Denver’s Living Streets Initiative.
  • Reimagine Speer as a monumental Grand Boulevard civic space: Identify a design vision and policy recommendations to elevate the public realm and urban form along Speer into a grand boulevard and public space that dignifies and celebrates the corridor’s rich cultural and historical importance to the city.
  • Reimagine Speer as a dynamic and seamless AurariaDowntown connector: Identify physical, policy, and programmatic strategies to transform Speer from a physical and psychological barrier into a nexus that unites and integrates the Auraria campus with adjacent Downtown districts.