A mixed-use development on the Highland Bluffs

Material Information

A mixed-use development on the Highland Bluffs
Kandelin, Susan K
Publication Date:
Physical Description:
76 leaves, [12] plates : illustrations, maps, plans (some color) ; 28 cm


Subjects / Keywords:
Real estate development -- Colorado -- Denver ( lcsh )
Urban renewal -- Colorado -- Denver ( lcsh )
Real estate development ( fast )
Urban renewal ( fast )
Colorado -- Denver ( fast )
bibliography ( marcgt )
theses ( marcgt )
non-fiction ( marcgt )


Includes bibliographical references (leaves 73-74).
General Note:
Cover title.
General Note:
Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for a Master's degree in Architecture, College of Design and Planning.
Statement of Responsibility:
[Susan K. Kandelin].

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Colorado Denver
Holding Location:
Auraria Library
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
08822099 ( OCLC )
LD1190.A72 1982 .K36 ( lcc )

Full Text
icArtfreu fj
a Mixed-Use Development on the Highland Bluffs;
Sufan K,

IT-tls- -str&s.

204 00255
environmental DESIGN
auraria library
This book is in preparation for completion of an Architectural thesis for the Master of Architecture Program at the University of Colorado at Denver
Susan K. Kandelin December, 1981
PdhstetL H S oL

Table of Contents
Project Development ...................................... 1
Regional Map ............................................. 3
Neighborhood Map ......................................... 4
The History of the Neighborhood
History .................................................. 5
Neighborhood Landmarks Map ............................... 9
Area Photographs ........................................ 10
Recent Development Activity
The Planning Office ..................................... 11
The Developer ........................................... 16
The Neighborhood Public ................................. 17
Site Information and Analysis
Notes ................................................... 21
Existing Site Features .................................. 22
Site Photographs ........................................ 23
Site Dimensions ......................................... 24
Topography .............................................. 25
Utilities ............................................... 26
Demolition .............................................. 27
Views and Sounds ........................................ 23
Climate ................................................. 29
Solar ................................................... 31
Auto Access ............................................. 33
Bus Access .............................................. 34
Bicycle Access .......................................... 35
Zoning .................................................. 36
Building Code ........................................... 41
Development Potential
Development Research .................................... 50
Market Analysis ......................................... 51
Financial Analysis ...................................... 53

Building Type and Public Space Research
Retail Shops and Shopping Center Urban Design............... 58
Office Buildings ........................................... 51
Open Space ................................................. 63
Program Requirements
Site Development ........................................... 65
Building Program ........................................... 68
Functional Relationships ................................... 70
For Thesis
Schedule ................................................... 71
Product .................................................... 71
Advisors ................................................... 71
People ................................................... 72
Books and Reports .......................................... 73
Periodicals ................................................ 75


Project Development
What began here as a small delimited project, has grown outrageously in size and complexity. Several months ago I quite single-mindedly located a piece of land I liked and decided retail and office space would do just fine there. Oh, how naive1. The more investigation of the site and building possibilities I did the bigger and better things got.
Looking at the property it became apparent the only reasonable thing to do was to take nearly all of the parcel presently for sale as my site for development. This multiplied my originally selected site area by 2 1/2.
Having done that, of course I had to plan the development of the entire site. Now my program includes residential units (though only schematic), open space and pathway connections, and bountiful parking. Things are growing.
The actual building program was concocted out of a market analysis for the area (from THK), a financial analysis for development potential (which I did), and various outstanding opinions from the neighborhood and the city planning office. The only programming methodology employed here was consumption of vast amounts of written and spoken work, and rumination on it all until priorities, necessities and agreements between sources became apparent. All this became refined into a usable program. Here too quantities grew as the financial analysis revealed only greater square footages in the office portion would make the project feasible.
Of course all this serves to complexify the situation, but really, that is perhaps the prime characteristic of life and reality. So as things become more complex, they become more real. I feel like my project, which began as an idea only in m^mind, has reached, through all this work, a level of reality. It now is on a real site, which could actually be purchased; it has a real building program, which is sound in economic, legal and practical senses; and I have real people to deal with, both as clients and architectural advisors.
The project lives.
The site is really quite wonderful. It is along the Highland Bluff, the hill rising from the west bank of the South Platte River. Ironically, it has both a rich history and direct access to modern downtown, making it a present

day developer's dream. The people of the area are concerned, intelligent and opinionated about future development. These are the people who, through a neighborhood organization, will be my client group. All in all I am content with and proud of this project, and glad to be working with the people of the area.


! I

History of
the Neighborhood

The area called Highland has a history nearly as old as that of Denver itself. Highland was claimed December 11, 1858 by General William Larimer, also the founder of Denver and after whom Larimer Street is named. At the time Highland was only an open area of land crossed by trails taken by the mountain men, prospectors, gamblers, traders and adventurers traveling westward to the mountains, but Larimer, apparently ever-active land speculator, saw potential for future development.
Highland became one of three towns surrounding the confluence of the South Platte River and Cherry Creek: Auraria southeast of the Platte and southwest of Cherry Creek, Denver City across Cherry Creek to the northeast, and Highland on the northwest bank of the South Platte. The three separate entities didn't last long, as in 1859 they all merged under the name of Denver. At that time the Highland area became officially known as North Denver or the North Division.
Years later in 1875 a separate "Town of Highlands" (with an s) was founded as an elite residential area. This town was to the south and west of old Highland and should not be confused with it.
Today there is an official Highland Neighborhood as defined by the Denver Planning Office. This Neighborhood encompasses the area bordered by Federal Boulevard on the west, 38th Avenue on the north, the Valley Highway on the east, and Speer Boulevard on the south. The neighborhood that I refer to adjacent to my site is only a small fraction of this official Neighborhood, and can be considered separately because of its unique position on the bluffs of the South Platte River.
Access to Highland from downtown Denver has always been a problem demanding attention. The first solution was ferry service, initiated across the South Platte River on May 2, 1859. In January of the following year the first bridge was built, crossing the river at or close to present-day 15th Street. The "Birds-eye view of the City of Denver, The Metropolis of Colorado" (see i11 us. p. 8 ) shows several bridges crossing the South Platte in 1889, including one, a truss-type bridge, definitely at 15th Street. Also visible on 15th Street

are the trolley car tracks running across the bridge and up the hill of the river bluff, turning left on present day W. 29th Avenue just beyond the site of this thesis project.
Although eventually numerous bridges existed, it was still a difficult crossing, traversing not only the river but also the booming railyards, particularly if traveling by private conveyance as some of the bridges were owned and used only by the trolley companies.
Net until the viaducts as we know them today, crossing the railyards and river at 15th, 15th and 20th Streets were built, was access to Highland direct and easy. Yet the barriers, the railyards, the South Platte River, and now the Valley Highway, still exist and demand entry to Highland only at those points where the viaducts arrive.
In the late 1800's Highland became a successful middle-class community with both residential and commercial areas. Along 15th Street between Boulder and Platte Streets a main business district developed. A pharmacy, a "fancy grocery", a general mercantile store, real estate and insurance offices, furniture stores, the volunteer fire department, and a one-room school house all existed in these two blocks in the early years. As well, Olinger Mortuary began its business at 15tn and Platte in 1890, and not long after moved up the hill to its present conspicuous location 3 blocks away. On the southwest corner of 15th and Central, on the site of my project, the King-McDowell Building was constructed and the North Denver Bank opened in that location in 1889 (see illus. p. 8 ). Unfortunately, the business was short-lived, being forced to close during the silver panic of 1893, paying off all depositors in full, never to resume business operations. The building gradually declined to lesser uses. Between 1930 and 1950 the occupants are listed as a plumbing shop and a sheet metal works. The building was destroyed by fire in 1975.
The rest of this once thriving business area experienced similar decline.
The Valley Highway (1-25) now cuts through the lower block between Central Street and Platte Street leaving only one historic structure, the Root Building (now under renovation and rumored to be making application for listing on the National Register of Historic Places). The upper block has fared better, being now occupied by small shops, a coffee house, a theater, a bar, several art galleries,

and residential use. Most of the original business district buildings, all constructed between 1880 and 1890, remain with a couple newer small one-story in-fill buildings and two open lots on the block. All of the old buildings are constructed of brick with tall glass storefronts (in some instances cased with iron) at street level, and one or two levels of former offices or apartments above. They are handsome buildings with much detailing in the brick work and fancy tin parapets (see photographs p. 10). These buildings are collectively listed on the National Register of Historic Places as "The Old Highland Business District". This listing provides more incentive for renovation, through lessened property taxes, than actual protection against demolition. Some renovation has occurred along the block but continuing efforts and investment are needed. However, the buildings function well for their present uses.
Throughout the immediate area there are historic buildings of architectural interest. The photographs and Neighborhood Landmark Map indicate the special quality this neighborhood has from its past. (See map and photographs pp. 9,10 .)


in rr
is vnuvnn
a an o U h-
' tn H (3 acd

* ^DTP f
ni thm
mud 1 1 -]L "a
Until tr
yi-l P 1 1 H {=1 n I
tf- tnU -it0
' >r m* I DD aDe
n n ri ^
Ui 3

o__. n

W 3 2 n d AVE
0 100 200 I l_______r
4 0 0 1
W . 3 0th
] Q
n d
% g t 1
i 1
3 n n
i i o

Development Activity

Within the perhaps 8 square blocks of the Highland Bluff area recent developer activity and attempted development has made obvious the interest and potential seen for the location. Yest these development attempts have so far been blocked by the public of the neighborhood. Essentially there are three active groups which will be discussed here: the developer, the public, and the intermediary, The Denver Planning Office.
The Planning Office
The Denver Planning Office has expressed its interest in and support of renovation and development in the Highland Bluff area. As general policy they state in "Trends and Issues: Land Use and Physical Development in Denver"
... it is vital for the City's future that substantial reinvestment occurs in the inner city. Unless this occurs, the area will continue to be characterized by deterioration, and the City's livability and economic status will be seriously threatened.
This statement recognizes the value of the older central areas of the city both as needed valuable land and as a historically rich social resource.
In the "Highland Neighborhood Plan" published in 1976, the Denver Planning Office details the declining state of the area and establishes a "policy and specific plan recommendations" for neighborhood improvement. In 1972 Highland Neighborhood was ranked as 6th worst in overall condition out of 70 residential Denver neighborhoods. Specific problems sighted included:
o much deterioration in the older buildings of the area, especially housing
o increase in residential rentals, decrease in owner-occupied units
o decline in the neighborhood income as a percentage of the overall city
o occurrence of commercial development detrimental to surrounding residential area, allowed by permissive B-4 zoning o increase in traffic volume on through-neighborhood streets, specifically use of these streets by commuters as a connector between downtown and North Denver, Arvada, and points beyond.

As policy recommendations for dealing with these problems, the Planning Office makes specific suggestions regarding the land use and development of the B1uff area:
That rehabilitation of existing dwellings including historic districts and structures, and new construction of multi-family units with the exception of historic districts and structures, be encouraged in those areas south of W. 32nd Ave. (so) designated... (See map, p. 15)
The accompanying map shows the block of my project site and the block to the
northeast across 15th Street indicated as main retail developments along the
15th Street frontage (including the historic district buildings) and around
the corners of the side streets through approximately half the depth of the
block. The remaining portions of the blocks are indicated as high-density
housing. As these two blocks presently contain much vacant land and what
housing exists there is low-density, the actualization of this plan would
mean extensive new construction and a great increase in density of land use.
This was 1976 policy recommendation.
Five years later, the plan of the area supported by the Planning Office
is somewhat changed and has become more specific and sensitive with regard to
my site. Previously all new office development was recommended to occur to
the northeast of my site around 17th and 18th Streets. Now office development
is seen as an acceptable land use on the blocks bordering 15th between Central
and Boulder Streets. This change in attitude may well be prompted by the
recognition of the financial reality that office space is the most profitable
use for a developer to build. As this is still largely untried development
area, the encouragement toward office construction may be a necessary incentive
to begin development activity. In an additional alteration of the earlier plan,
the five existing houses on Umatilla Street at the southwest corner of the block
containing my site are recommended to remain as single family units, and become
part of a lower density housing enclave which would include the Romanesque
Revival brownstones and Victorian brick houses (all circa 1890) along W. 28th
Avenue between Umatilla and Vallejo Streets. (See map, p. 15)
These policies are only recommendations but the Planning Office does have
the power to act on them in a manner affecting the built environment when a
zoning amendment application is made. Such an application must be approved by

the Planning Commission and the Governing Body (in the City of Denver, this would be the City Council) before a legal change takes effect. The planning policy developed should be used as a guide by the Planning Commission to indicate approval or denial of the zoning amendment.

! 12nd A V E
J i
1 4

The Developer
Developers have recognized this area as one of potential growth. A few years ago, numerous parcels were compiled around the old business area on 15th Street. Presently the entire block bordered by 15th, 16th, Central and Boulder Streets is under single ownership. A study of the most recent attempt at large scale development on this block provides an insight into the concerns and sentiments of not only the developer, but the Planning Office and the neighborhood as well.
The most recent proposal for the block was a mixed-use development totalling 435,000 sq.ft., divided between office space (52%), retail space (11%), and residential units (37%). In addition, a largely subterranean 3 to 4 level parking garage providing 1000 stalls was to be built over the area of most of the site. Included in the scheme was the renovation of the historic buildings on 15th Street. The remainder of the present block would be razed. The scale and distribution over the site of the project necessitated application for a zoning amendment. The change would have been from existing B-3, B-4, and R-3 zoning, allowing a combined 265,000 sq.ft, of gross floor area, to a Planned Unit Development status. PUD process is designed to allow master planning of a large parcel of land. As such, greater flexibility is allowed in the development restrictions than if dealing with just the zoning in effect on a lot by lot basis. If approved, a PUD plan overrides existing zoning and the land must be developed in accordance with the approved plan, unless the PUD process is entered into again.
In this instance, initial PUD application was for 485,000 sq.ft, of gross floor area, 83% over the allowable by existing zoning. Indicating a slightly guarded pro-growth attitude toward the Highland Bluff area, the Planning Commission gave approval of the PUD zone change with several stipulations which acted to somewhat reduce the project size. Gross square footage was knocked back to 435,000 sq.ft. (65% over that allowed by zoning). Also, maximum allowable building height was lowered by the equivalent of one to two floors from that initially requested. All the stipulations were accepted by the applicant, and the application moved on to public hearings and City Council. The passage of the PUD was effectively defeated at City Council vote due to the neighborhood public stance.

The Neighborhood Public
In response to this PUD rezoning attempt, the officially recognized
neighborhood group, the Jefferson Highland Sunnyside Neighborhood Association,
produced a Position Statement written by their Zoning Committee and voted to
acceptance by the general members at large. This statement reads in part:
The Jefferson Highland Sunnyside Neighborhood Association opposes the current application for the rezoning of the property bordered by 15th and 15th Streets, Boulder and Central Streets.
o The current zoning allows for 265,000 sq.ft, of development on the block. Given a more acceptable mixture of uses, the JHS would consider an increase in density, o The existing Highland Neighborhood Plan calls for both retail and residential uses only. Any development should be at least 50% residential, o Currently more than 1/2 of the block has a 40' height
limitation through both zoning waiver and historic landmark designation. New development anywhere on the block should not exceed this limit.
o The design of this development is not in scale with the existing neighborhood or in harmony with its character.
(It is fortress-1ike in its approach. This line was struck from the Statement as being overly negative and subjective.)
o A massive development on this block sets the precedent for Highlands and all of N.W. Denver by introducing downtown into the neighborhoods and thus it threatens the existing character and social fiber of the area, o JHS does not oppose any and all development on this block... and is open to converse regarding more compatible development...
These positions reflect the neighborhood attitude that any development must compliment the existing area, without creating radical change. This particular development scheme, in addition to being physically quite massive and beyond the scale of the surrounding structures, was viewed as being somewhat exclusive to the neighborhood. The schematic design was a square donut with open space collected at the center. Half of the open area was restricted for use by the residential units only, the other half was adjacent to new retail and office space. Though presumably accessible to the public from the street via passageways through and between perimeter buildings, the lack of direct and visual connection to this area suggested a prohibitive feel for public use of the urban open space. The neighborhood has expressed an interest in and need

for open space being incorporated into any new development in the area, but it must be inviting and readily available to the public.
The people who live and work in the Highland Bluff area are quite vocal in their opinions regarding development. The business district block on 15th Street has been called "something of a Bohemian arts center" and the people there are understandably content with the existing situation. Yet, they recognize the escalating land prices and land sales as evidence that development is inevitable and that, if they can have an influence in controlling the design of impending development, they can potentially end up with new structures and spaces of benefit to the neighborhood.
It should be noted that there was a group of neighborhood people^taking an opposing position to that adopted by JHS, in support of the most recent PUD proposal. Their feelings were that, given development is inevitable on the site, this particular proposal which provided assurance that the arts groups would remain on 15th Street, may well have been the best offer that will be made to the neighborhood. Time will tell.
In the last couple of years a new neighborhood group called North Denver Gateway has been formed to deal specifically with the issues of new development in the area. With regard to the Bluff area, their intent is to generate guidelines for development which would assure beneficial and compatible results for the existing community. These guidelines would also provide the group with a tool with which to deal actively and positively with developers.
This fall a student group from UCD, working with North Denver Gateway, has produced an initial set of such guidelines. Their recommendations include: o building color and materials should be compatible with existing neighborhood historic buildings o building height should be no greater than that of the historic buildings
o building height and mass should step down with the topography to maintain the incline of the hillside in the built environment
o views both from the Bluffs to Downtown and vice-versa should be maintained, and the stepped configuration of buildings would promote this

In addition, a suggested site schematic including the block of my project was developed and endorsed by North Denver Gateway (see map p.20).
In developing my thesis design project I will use North Denver Gateway as a client group and, beginning with the project program generated according to developer concerns, work towards a design solution which meets the desires of the neighborhood.


Mixed U5£

Site Information & Analysis

2 1
Most of the following maps and charts are self-explanatory but a few notes are suggested.
Site Dimensions
These are taken from a partial site survey supplied by the present owner and the official lot map available at the Tax Assessor's Office. The present property owner actually holds slightly more area (2,640 sq.ft.) than what I will use as my site. This additional area is that of the lot belonging to the center house of the five on Umatilla Street. According to Planning Office recommendations this house will remain.
Access is excellent to the site both from downtown and 1-25 but impact on the neighborhood could be improved.
Automobile Access Highland Neighborhood Plan recommends down-grading Tejon Street and the 15th and 16th Streets viaducts to collector streets.
Bicycle Access There is a real need to have an indicated bicycle route (painted bike lane and signage) through Highland connecting with the Platte River Greenway Bike Path.
Views & Sounds
The depressed elevation of immediately adjacent 1-25 saves the site from being a true hardship case. Freeway noise is significant but not intolerable on the site.
The most spectacular views are over 1-25, the highway being hidden in its recess, to the downtown skyline.

28th Avenue
Umatilla Street
a* W*I4 H3J
. V V>: \f CCv j '"*5 .f*' if
i iTr:
,,r 3 1 1 ^ \JF vVtV
SBfr'nan 4MWtWa F W / \ y-^v
SL s M

Umatilla Street


28th Avenue

Umatilla Street

Characteristics of Denver climate: o low relative humidity o light to moderate winds o mile average temperature
o wide swing in diurnal and seasonal temperature o light precipitation o high degree of solar radiation o rarely persistent snow cover
o "heat island" effect in urban area raising local
temperature due to lack of vegetation and predominance of heat-storing mass
o presence of air pollution reducing solar radiation received, lowers air temperature.
J r n A
MAX, -tt s=z> A!
M'M- 2M
1 r AV i ^^1 1 1-2 ! ^ / i

M2 Tl "V>
M J ' J A GS ij, I T ,
M^ M2 tr-p-y
M-s? <££> <*X=> M5 dbM
i~l" '2M i ^
'1 \£> I--A !- > i- I
1 - I I- ! M-a
Ml M! M2 ~T^- I *^M>

normal heating degree days


altitude angles


The present site area is zoned 3-3 (with a waiver indicating "structures are not to exceed 40 feet in height, measured from grade") and R-3. These areas are shown on the map below.
Total square footage allowed according to zoning would be 77,785 sq.ft.
(36,100 @1:1 + 13,392 @ 3:1). This exceeds the proposed project of 73,500 sq.ft, by 4285 sq.ft. Therefore PUD re-zoning would not be required based on gross floor

area but may be desirable to allow flexibility in use location (eg. Residential units could be on B-3 land where dwelling units are not a use by right). Also a reduction in collective parking requirements may be allowed, with compatible uses in a PUD.
For the purposes of this project PUD status will be assumed with any alteration of the presently effective zoning regulations being only those acceptable to the neighborhood and consistent with the opinion of the Denver Planning Office.
Applicable Zoning Ordinance:
Denver Zoning Ordinance Zoning Classification:
B-3, Planned Building Group
Uses by Right: among others
Bakery Store .8-3(i)
Barber Shop (f)
Beauty Shop (h)
Book Store (1)
Candy, Nut & Confectionary Store (n)
Dairy Products Store (r)
Deli catessen Sto re (s)
Drug Store (u)
Eating Place - serving and eating area may be out
of doors , if!) area is at least 50 feet from
R-3 district boundary, 2) area is contiguous to eating place to which it is accessory,
3) area shall be clearly delineated by fences,
walls or plant materials. (w) Floral Shop (aa) Furniture Store (dd)(ee) Grocery Store (ii)

Home Furnishing Store Laundry-Self Service Only Liquor Store Meat, Fish & Seafood Store Office Parking of Vehicles need not be enclosed Stationery Store Tobacco Store Toy Store OD (qq) (ss) (w) (bbb) (ddd) (ooo) (sss) (ttt)
Location of Structures: any zone lot line which abuts a street or alley way: 5' setback any other zone lot line: no setback .8-4(2)
Permissible wall heights: 42" maximum in setbacks 72" maximum elsewhere 8-4(2)(e)
Floor Area Ratio: 1:1, grass floor area of structures (excluding parking) shall not exceed area of the zone lot .8-4(4)
Bulk of Structures: Starting at a horizontal line thru either 1) a point 10' above the mid-point of an abutting street or alley center line between zone lot lines extended, or 2) a point 10' above the mid-point of zone lot line not abutted by a street or alley, planes extend up over zone lot at 45 angle (1:1), rise:run) .8-4(3)
Maximum height: 40' from grade.
By Waiver

3 8 A
Off-Street Parking:
Retail-Class, 1 stall per 200 sq. ft. floor area required.
Office Class 9, 1 stall per 500 sq. ft. floor area required.
Reference .8-6 Art.614
Off-Street Loading:
For structures of less than 25,000 sq. ft.
.8-7 Art.615
GFA 1 berth (160 sq.ft, minimum) per 12,500 GFA or increment thereof.
For structures of 25,000 to 40,000 sq.ft. GFA 1 berth For structures of 40,001 to 100,000 sq.ft. GFA 2 berths with minimum berth size 10' wide, 35' long, 14' high.
Planned Building Group: .8-8
(if 2 or more structures are constructed on single Art.616
zone lot)
Art.616 4-3(3)(a)
Minimum Distance Between Buildings: the height of the taller building, maximum 75% of perimeter
Open Courtyard Enclosure:

Applicable Zoning Ordinance: Denver Zoning Ordinance.
Zoning Classification:
Uses by Right: among others Dwelling, multiple or single unit Parking (need not be enclosed) .4-3(1) (e)(f) (P)
Permitted Home Occupations: among others. Fine arts studio Craftswork .4-3(4)(g)
Unobstructed Open Space: Minimum of 20% of lot area for residential structure 1-3 stories in height, area may be on ground or roof decks not more than 6 above grade. .4-4(1)
Location of Structure: Front Setback: 10' Rear Setback: garage 5' from centerline alley or rear lot line, all other structures 20' .4-4(2) (a) (b)
Side Setback: 7'6" on lot greater than 30' wide with more than 2 dwelling units. (c)(c-2)
Outside Stairways: May project 5 into front setback, 10' into rear, 3' into side. .4-4(2)(d)(d-3)
Unwalled Porches, Terraces & Balconies: May extend 5' into front and rear setbacks. .4-4(2)(d)(d-4)

Bulk of Structure: Starting at horizontal line through either 1) a point of property line not abutted by a street or alley, or 2) a point 20' above the center point of the center line of an abutting street or alley with lot lines extended, extend limit planes up over zone lot at 6326' (2:1, rise:run) with respect to horizontal, until 30' horizontally distant from starting point, then extend planes vertically (90). .4-4(3)
Floor Area Ratio: 3:1, gross floor area of the structure shall not exceed 3 times the lot area. .4-4(4)
Minimum Size Dwelling: 500 sq.ft. .4-4(5)
Off-Street Parking Requirements: .4-5
Same as B-3 Art.615

Building Code
Applicable Building Code Ordinance:
Denver Building Code, as amended through 1979
Fire Zone Designation:
Occupancy Classification:
Office: F-2 Retai1: F-2
Placing of Drinking and Dining: F-l Parking Garage: G-2, enclosed Apartments: H-2 Townhouses: H-3
Construction Type:
F-2: IV, 1-Hour F-l : IV, 1-Hour
G-3: II, unless sprinkled, then V, 1-Hour H-2: V, 1-Hour H-3: V, 1-Hour
Occupancy Separation:
between G-3 and H-2 or H-3, 2-Hour between H-3 units, 2-Hour all else, 1-Hour
Maximum Allowable Floor Area:
F-l, F-2, IV, 1-Hour:
Basic Allowable = 13,500 sq.ft.
+ 33-1/37,(Fire Zone 3) = 4,500 + 1007 (over 1 story) = 18,000 + 47.57 (Separation on 2 sides)' 17,100 Total Allowable = 53,100 sq.ft.
Sect. 1501 (a)
Table No. 5-A
Table No. 5-C Sect.505(b) Sect. 505(b) Sect. 506(d)
Table No. 5-B Sect.1302 (b)
Table No. 5-C Sect. 505 Sect. 506

Maximum Allowable Floor Area, continued: Table No. 5-C
G-3, II: Sect. 505
Basic Allowable = 45,000 sq.ft. Sect. 506
+ 33-1/3% (Fire Zone 3) = 45,000 sq.ft.
+ 100% (over 1-sotry) = 60,000
Total Allowable = 120,000 sq.ft.
H-2, V, 1-Hour:
Basic Allowable = 7,800 sq.ft.
+ 33-1/3% (Fire Zone 3) = 2,600 + 100% (over 1-story) = 10,400
Total Allowable (per bldg.) = 20,800 sq.ft.
H-3, V, 1-Hour:
Unlimited square footage.
Maximum Building Height Table No. 5-D
F- 1, F- 2, IV, 1 -Hou r:
4 stories, 65 feet
G- 3, II l
6 stories, 75 feet
H- 2, H- 3, V, 1- Hour *
3 stories, 50 feet
Exterior Bearing Wall Fire Rating:
Group F-l, F-2, Type IV, 1-Hour:
1-Hour if less than 10' setback from property line or centerline of adjacent street or alley, otherwise unprotected Group G-3, Type II:
4-Hour (2-Hour at openings)
Group H-2, H-3, Type V, 1-Hour:
1-Hour if less than 5' setback, all exterior walls if fronting on street 40' or more in width may be unprotected
Table No. 17-A Table No. 17-B Sect. 1903(g) Sect. 2203

Exterior Non-Bearing Wall Fire Rating:
unprotected if fronting on street 40' or more in width, otherwise some as requi red Bearing Wall Fire Rating
Exterior Wall Opening Restrictions:
Openings not permitted in wall less than 5' from property line or center line of street or alley.
F-l, F-2, G-3: 3/4-Hour opening if less than 10' setback H-2, H-3: 3/4-Hour openings if less than
5' setback from adjacent property line of center line of abutting street of alley
Interior Bearing Wall
F-l , F-2, IV; 1 -Hour
G-3, II: 2-Hour
H-2, H-3, V: 1-Hour
Structural Frame Fire
F-l, F-2, IV: 1-Hour
G-3, II: 2-Hour
H-2, H-3,V: 1-Hour
Fire Rating:
Rati ng:
reference Sect. 2103(a)
Sect. 1707 Table No. 17-C Sect. 4308
Table No. 17-4
Table No. 17-A

Permanent Partitions Fire Rating:
F-1, F-2, IV:
1-Hour G-3, II:
1-Hour H-2 H-3, V:
Vertical Opening Enclosure Fire Rating:
F-1 F-2, IV:
1- Hour G-3, II:
2- Hour H-2, H-3, V:
1 -Hour
Every opening into a vertical enclosure shall be protected by a self-closing fire assembly.
Opening through 1-Hour wall requires 3/4-Hour rated fire assembly.
Opening through 2-Hour wall requires 1-1/2-Hour rated fire assembly. Except openings to exterior may be unprotected as permitted by Table No. 17-c.
Trash chutes shall terminate in room
separated from rest of building by a 1-Hour wall.
Floor Fire Rating:
F-1, F-2, IV:
1-Hour G-3, II:
re ferenee Table No. 17-A
Table No. 17-A Sect. 1706 Chap. 43
Table No. 17-A
H-2, H-3, V: 1-Hour

Roof Fire Rating: Table No. 17-A
F-l , F-2, IV: Sect. 2107
1-Hour Sect. 1906
6-3, II:
H-2, H-3, V:
Occupant Loads: Tabl e No. 33-A
F-l , F-2:
story 1, retail, 10500 sq.ft.
30 sq.ft./occupant = 350 occupants story 2,3,4, office, 38,000 sq.ft.,
100 sq.ft./occupant = 380 occupants total occupancy = 730
G- 3:
54,780 sq.ft., 300 sq.ft./occupant, total occupancy =183
25.000 sq.ft., 200 sq.ft./occupant total occupancy = 125
25.000 sq.ft., 300 sq.ft./occupant total occupancy = 84
Number of Exits Required:
From each floor all occupancy types:
2 exits
Table No. 33-A Sect. 3302

Minimum Exit Width Required:
exi t wi dth:
F-l , F-2: 14'- 7"
G-3: 3' -8"
H-2: 2'6"
H-3: 1 -8"
wi dth from each story
F-l, F-2, 2nd floor =
3rd floor =
4th floor =
G-3, 2nd floor = 2'9"
Sect. 3302(j)
Arrangement of Exits Sect. 3304
Distance between exits = 25 minimum Sect. 3302 (k)
Arranged so possible to go in either direction from any point in the corridor to separate exit (except in case of legal dead-end corridor).
Dead-end corridors allowed if not over 20 ft. in length, 1/2 all doors opening into have 3/4-Hour Fire Rating and self-closing device (except H).
Maximum Travel Distance to Exit: Sect. 3322
F-l, F-2, G-3: Sect. 3320
from any point in building = 150' Sect. 3319
if sprinkled = 200'
H-2, H-3:
within unit = 50', 1 flight of stairs unit entrance to exit = 100'

Exit Door Requirements: Sect. 3303
Must swing in direction of travel when
serving occupancy load of 30 or more Must be freely operable from the inside minimum door size = 3'0" x 6'8" minimum clear exitway = 34" maximum door width = 4'0"
Landing required on each side of door of
size such that when door is fully open landing extends min. of 2 ft. beyond edge of door.
Doors shall not swing into the public way.
Corridors and Exit Balconies: Sect. 3304
minimum 44" in width, doors may not swing into this width minimum 7'0" clear height Walls and ceilings of public corridors must be 1-Hour construction.
Long side of an exterior exit balcony shall be min. 50% open, exit balcony may not be located where setback requires protection of openings.
Stairways: Sect. 3305
minimum 44" in width for occupancy load of more than 50
minimum 35" in width for occupancy load of 50 or less minimum run = 10"
maximum rise = 7-1/2" except stairs to
unoccupied roof = maximum rise = 8", minimum run = 9"
minimum landing depth = width of stairway,
5' maximum required when straight run. maximum vertical distance between landings = 12'6"

Stairways, continued:
On all floors above 1st floor wheelchair
refuge of 25" min. x 42" min. required in each stair enclosure if elevator serves that floor.
Handrails required both sides of stairway, if stair width is greater than 88" intermediate rail is required.
Openings in exterior wall within 10' of exterior stairway shall 3/4-Hour Fire Rating if building is 3 or more stories.
Stairway to roof shall be provided if building is 4 or more stories
Minimum headroom clearance: 7'0"
Ramps: Sect. 3306
width same as stairs maximum slope 1:12 landings required at tcp, bottom and every 5' of rise minimum landing depth = 5'
Exit Signs: Sect. 3312
must be illuminated and provided at each exitway entry doer and at building exi t
exit sign and exitway illumination must be on separate circuits from other power in building.

Minimum Toilet Requirements: Sect. 509
Retail and Office: Table No. 5-
story 1 men 3 water closets Table No. 5-F
3 urinals 5 lavatories women 9 water closets 5 lavatories
story 2, 3, 4 (req'd each story) men 2 water closets
2 urinals
3 lavatories women 4 water closets
3 lavatories
drinking fountain required, 1 per floor
Requirements for Handicapped Persons: Sect. 3301 (m)
where public facilities, 1 water closet Sect. 510
and 1 lavatory for each sex accessible to handicapped must be provided H-2, 1 in 7 units must be handicapped accessi ble
must provide one means of exit by ramp from first floor.


Development Research
Community Builders Handbook recognizes three types of shopping centers.
It is the smallest one, the Neighborhood Center, that most closely resembles the retail area I am proposing. Average gross leasable for these centers is 30,000 sq.ft, to 100,000 sq.ft. My project is much smaller at 10,500 sq.ft., yet the main intent of the development is the same as that of the Neighborhood Center to provide for the sale of convenience goods and personal services needed in day to day living. The principal anchor tenant in a Neighborhood Center is typically a supermarket. In my center it will be a somewhat smaller grocery store taking the same role with regard to the neighborhood.
This retail area is being developed with not only present neighborhood residents in mind, but also future residents and office workers on my site as well as adjacent sites, all of which will no doubt be developed in the not too far off future. This impending increase in market group makes the development, and relatively higher rents, more feasible than may be apparent right now
The other, smaller stores in the project, although much of it is only indicated as flexible square footage, are intended to be mixed between neighbor hood service stores and shops which would depend more on patronage from future local office workers and people from outside the immediate area. This last type is like the majority of the stores now existing on that block along 15th Street (e.g. kite store, fabric store, hair cutters). With a few more such specialty stores potentially the street, along both sides of the 2500 block, could become a draw to people from outside the area. This could greatly improve the financial vitality of all the retail and service shops.
The people in the area have expressed concern that this not become an enclave of expensive, elite shops which offer nothing in goods or services that the present neighborhood would want or could afford. As long as neighborhood service stores are the main focus of development this should not be a danger. Also knowing the concern and activism of merchants and residents along 15th Street this kind of trend would probably be effectively resisted.
With regard to shopping center development the following few points are given in a Housing magazine article as "the successful formula": o Keep them smal1. o Build them flexible, o Include professional office space.

Market Analysis
In 1979 THK did a market analysis for development in the historic building adjacent to my site and over the entire block, including the historic buildings, across 15th Street. Their findings and conclusions form the basis of the building program I have developed.
Based on neighborhood population, estimated income, commercial competition, and expected capture rate the following store types with the indicated square footages are recommended as economically justified:
Combination Apparel 330
General Food 4500
Beauty/Barber 320
Restaurant 3600
Mi sc. Retail (3 0 500) 1500
Specialty Food 500
Li quor 850
Drug 990
Gi ft/Book/Jewelry 600
Furni ture/Desi gn 3200
16,390 sq.ft.
THK notes this is a unique tenant mix aimed at attracting both local trade and people from outside the neighborhood. They credit the accessibility of the site as a major factor benefiting the area as a potential regional draw.
In my building program I have used this suggested tenant list as a starting point and eliminated some stores which already exist along the block (off my site, but within the area and buildings THK was considering, e.g. Liquor Store, Barber/Beauty Shop) or did not as yet seem appropriate to the area (e.g. Furniture/Design Store). Some of the store types that are included on the program are scaled down to better suit the size of the project as a whole and the indications of the financial analyses done. To increase flexibility in the commercial development an attempt will be made to design generic square footage (eg. 500 sq.ft.) spaces for the smaller, less specific, stores. These spaces should be designed in such a way that they can be joined or

sub-divided to create larger or smaller shops. The THK study also analyzes office space and residential development on their site.
Their concern is specifically with renovated office space but their findings can at least be used as an indicator for new office development.
They predict the site will have a demand for 14,500 sq.ft, of office space per year. With my program of 38,000 sq.ft., this would require 2.6 years for the square footage to be fully absorbed. THK's analysis was for 39,800 sq.ft, of office space estimated to be absorbed in 2.7 years. They indicate this to be a favorable conclusion for development potential.
As well, the study surveys five existing contemporary (completed between 1960 and 1973) office buildings in the surrounding area. Most of these are clustered along Speer Blvd. about 6 blocks from my site. In spring 1979 vacancy rates in these buildings ranged from 0% to 6%, with an overall average of 2.8%. Given a downtown vacancy rate of 9.5% at that time, this comparison indicates excellent potential for new office space in the Highland area.
With regard to condominium development THK's prediction is for a demand of 4.5 units per month, resulting in absorption of the proposed 25 units on my site in 5.5 months. Their recommendation is toward smaller units (90% between 650 sq.ft, and 950 sq.ft.) priced in the mid-market range. More recent lending attitudes run contrary to this, however, indicating that uoper range priced units are more willingly financed. Therefore my condominiums will be larger (average 1000 square feet) and definitely more expensive as construction and loan costs have risen considerably in the two years since THK's market analysis was produced.

Financial Analysis
In order to construct a reasonably valid building program it was necessary to do a series of financial analyses. In general the way that these progressed was from a small building (about 30,000 sq.ft, of which 2/5 was retail space) to a larger building with a greater percentage of office space. Initially my real desire was to deal primarily in this project with retail spaces. Now it has become more complex more office area, more parking, but hopefully the retail aspects can still be fully explored.
In order to work with North Denver Gateway as a client group it is necessary that my proposed project be economically feasible so that it may serve as an example of a financially realistic development which answers to the community's needs and desires for the Bluffs area. As North Denver Gateway deals with developers, among others, this financial analysis is an important part of my thesis investigation.
The included map (see p. 55 ), received from the realtor handling this property, shows the parcel of land now for sale. Total area is 50,000 sq.ft.
I will use all but the lot belonging to the house on Umatilla Street as my project site, for a total site area of 47,360 sq.ft. The actual parcel has an asking price of $1,500,000.00. This land was purchased in August 1981 for $9 to $10 per sq.ft. A few weeks later it was put up for sale at $30 per sq.ft. This parcel is an example of the kind of land accumulation and speculation that has been going on in the Highland Bluff area and is of much concern to the local residents. For the purpose of my financial analysis it has been recommended that I use $18 per sq.ft, as a more reasonable purchase price on the land. This figure is supported by the property across 15th Street on which negotiations at close to $18 per sq.ft, have recently been agreed upon.
All of the construction and development costs, and the expected rental and rate of return figures are ones which were recommended to me as being reasonable for the year 1983, the soonest that a project in the earliest stages of design now would be under construction. As well the analysis forms and calculation procedures were supplied to me by people more familiar with such information and techniques, and although only an estimating method, the procedure and figures seem logical.

Two separate analyses sheets were worked through. One is for the rental portion of the development the retail and office space, and its required parking (see p. 56). The other form is worked out for the condominiums and concludes in a sale price (see p. 57).
For the retail and office analysis a rate of return equal to 14" was desired. My programmed square footages yield slightly under this at 13.3". Assuming a slightly larger leasable area produced a smaller rate of return, presumably because the expense of additional required parking stalls more than off-set increased rental income. Therefore the figures I have adopted for a program are near an economic turn around point and are, I suspect, close to a maximum that would be acceptable in the neighborhood for that site.
Because the rate of return is slightly lower than what a developer would normally consider acceptable some adjustment or incentive would probably have to be arranged to actualize the project. Possible assistance on this could occur through a grant or loan program arranged by North Denver Gateway, or through tax incentives on adjacent historic structures if they were purchased and renovated by the same developer. Also, perhaps more realistic is the option to subsidize the retail and office development with an increased percentage profit on the residential units. And if PUD rezoning is pursued and a reduced parking requirment is allowed, as would seem likely, this would be of immediate benefit in reducing hard building costs for the project.
The calculated selling price on the 25 condominiums is $156,290 per unit. This fully covers cost of the unit, 1-1/2 parking stalls, and 10% profit for the developer. This price is in the range suggested for upper end condominiums.


Building Type & Public Space Research

Retail Shops &
Shopping Center Urban Design
Recent literature on retail structures tends to deal with one of two types. One is the shopping wall traditionally suburban but increasingly urban with more vertically oriented malls (e.g. Citicorp in NYC). The other mainstream at the time is the Faneuil Hall, Larimer Square, streetside, old-time pedestrian-oriented type of development. My project will be more like the latter, fitting into the fabric of an existing and historic retail street; yet there is much to learn, especially regarding the accommodation of modern necessities, from the contemporary shopping mall.
Faneuil Hall Marketplace has been compared, both in praise and insult, to Disneyland. It does in fact recreate much of Disneyland's Main Street with a social and commercial vitality much lacking in a world of predominant suburban life. Historically the Main Street of Anywhere, U.S.A. has been an essential focus of both commerce and social life. It has provided a concentration of commodities and humanity. Post World War II saw the abandonment of these old time centers in favor of the new expansive American way of life in the suburbs, complete with ubiquitous automobiles, plentiful gasoline and the everything-your-heart-could-desire-on-ha 1f-price-special-this-week-only suburban shopping mall. The glamour of the suburbs was powerful while transportation was cheap and before the suburban mentality, with its sense of isolation, was suspect. During this period Disneyland really was a rare and special re-enactment of the hustle and bustle and human contact that was missing in the suburbs. Now interest is returning to older, established in-town areas due in part to transportation pressures (expense and time), but also I suspect as reaction against the social void of the suburbs. The fact that human beings are intrinsically social creatures is a concept much more designed for along the old main streets than in the suburban shopping mall.
Upper 15th Street experienced its heyday as a commercial street almost a hundred years ago. After a long period of decline it is now seeing some resurgence of the old character. My project will concentrate on building on the existing street and shopping activity to generate new vitality and commercialism, re-activating this historic Main Street.

The conscious addressing of the street is essential. The truly great and successful urban shopping spaces of the world do this and serve as valuable examples. The Galleria in Milan acts as a pedestrian street linking important areas of the city beyond either end. The Rue de Rivoli in Paris has an arcade enclosed sidewalk parallel to the streets, shops on one side, busy traffic on the other. New York's Rockefeller Center pulls pedestrians down a retail lane perpendicular to adjacent 5th Avenue.
Christopher Alexander addresses the interface of automobile streets and shopping areas, first bringing up issues of the conflict, then offering a solution:
Shopping centers depend on access: they need locations near major traffic arteries. However, the shoppers themselves don't benefit from traffic: they need quiet, comfort, and convenience, and access from the pedestrian paths in the surrounding neighborhood.
Encourage local shopping centers to grow in the form of short pedestrian streets, at right angles to major roads and opening off these roads with parking behind the shops, so that the cars can pull directly off the road, and yet not harm the shopping street.
Jane Thompson, in conjunction with her husband Benjamin Thompson architect for James Rouse, shopping mall developer extraodinaire (both the old-time and suburban varieties), cites three qualities she credits Faneuil Hall's success to:
1) physical safety/security,
2) sensory variety (both in the architecture and the goods for sale), and
3) social contact (an aspect of the Main Street social life).
Architectural Record notes that food has become an increasingly important ingredient in most retail centers. Also, the trend has been to smaller shops so that greater variety and choice is presented to the customer and browser. They cite 4 points which must be consciously dealt with in mall design: 1) anchor store locations, 2) mall encry points, 3) public and private spaces, and
4) service access.
Nory Miller writes on consumer behavior and its current implications for store design. Impulse items should be place near the entry; demand items

should be further back. Entrances should be as open as possible, requiring little physical effort or mental decision-making to pass through. Dramatic and variable lighting is important to emphasize displays and merchandise node areas. Shop window display areas are now considered an unnecessary use of expensive square footage; instead the merchandise within the store is well lit and oriented to be viewed from the front store window. Mobile, modular interior partitions, desks and display racks make space more flexible and are less expensive in the long run than permanent installations. Small stores are more desirable, and large stores imitate this by creating specialized areas with differing merchandise.
In general, for the consumer shopping should be fun, entertaining, and stimulating in the variety available. From the retailer's point of view, the space should be efficient and flexible, offering both good service access and visibility to pedestrian, and potential customer, flow by the store.
Traditional store depth is from 100 to 140 feet. Present trends are to less depth, along with overall smaller stores. At Writer Square, an in-town mixed-use development, store depth averages around 50 feet and the minimum store front width is 15 feet. Bay spacing is an important determinant of shop proportions. Columns at 30 feet on center offers the greatest flexibility.
At Writer Square service access is provided by an internal corridor with shops backing up to it on either side. As well public restrooms are accessible off this corridor, making plumbing in every store unnecessary.

Office Buildings
In speculative office building design the main concerns are economics of construction and maintenance, and leasability of the space. Aesthetics usually, though not necessarily, are considered mainly from the eventual tenants' point of view; basically what will rent square footage. This does not have to have negative implications, but it does mean that speculative office space is rarely a building type for innovative experimentation in design.
In general the building design should meet prevailing expectations for leasable office space, and any special design features should be readily appreciated and not too costly.
Flexibility of tenant use is probably the issue of greatest importance in speculative office design. Space must be arranged so that large or small offices may be carved out and still maintain reasonable accessways from office entries to the core area with vertical circulation and restrooms. Usually this service core is located centrally within the building.
The configuration and proportions of the overall floor area on each level are the factors which allow flexibility and efficient use of space. A 25 to 30 foot depth from the corridor to outside wall in leasable office area is considered optimal. Not only is this distance within acceptable distance from exterior window wall to make it desirable, premium rental space, but also this depth is one that can be easily and efficiently subdivided (e.g. two 12 foot offices and a 4 foot internal corridor). Of course, column placement is important to flexibility of subdivision of space and column bay spacing must be selected with interior space in mind.
Suggested range of floor to floor height in office construction is 11 to 14 feet, usually about 12 feet is used. Finished ceiling height is typically 8 to 9 feet, allowing for a plenum for mechanical systems and recessed lighting above the ceiling. Other options are possible for location of mechanical systems, for example beneath a raised floor surface.
Dealing on the office worker user level, recent studies indicate desires of both the workers and management. Goals of the higher-ups are productivity, efficiency and cost effectiveness. Concerns of the users involve interaction and access versus privacy, and desire for personal control over their own

environment. Basically they want a neat, organized, yet personal space, lessened distractions and noise, and at least a sense of privacy. These concerns are best dealt with by the space planner, but awareness of them is beneficial for the building shell designer.

0 3
Open Space
Open space is always an important consideration in retail center design, whether it is just the sidewalk or pedestrian passageway connecting store entries or a larger area containing seating, landscaping and perhaps a fountain or other focus. Even within the enclosed suburban malls careful attention, and sometimes extravagant budgets, are dedicated to these areas.
These spaces are given over to the pedestrian, either one who has
temporarily abandoned an automobile close by, or the neighborhood person who
arrives on foot. To quote from Urban Open Space:
Pedestrian zones are the first signals and physical symbols for a new understanding of the city. This understanding views the city less as a functional structure and more as a living space for human beings. Because pedestrian zones are the symbols of a new spirit, they are of utmost importance.
Essentially there are two types of urban open space. One is of harder surfaces with plenty of seating and some landscaping. It is oriented to surrounding business and retail structures and may have a good deal of traffic flow and activity in it. The other type of open space has more of a park-like atmosphere and may be thought of as more of a place for rest and introversion.
In my project the open space will be of the first type with definite connection to retail and office areas, to the extent of potentially containing outdoor dining area for the restaurant. However, it may also be possible and desirable to build in small nooks which serve the function of the second type providing passive, quiet areas.
Rockefeller Center is perhaps the one grand historic example of successful urban open space in the United States. It draws pedestrians down the retail lane previously mentioned to where it opens out to the sunken plaza where a concentration of activity occurs: ice skating, roasted chestnut venders and a multitude of spectators in the winter, and dining, flower sellers and casual strolling in the summer. One subtle trick in the design of the complex is that the lane slopes slightly down to the plaza level making it an easier walk and providing a more immediate view of the eventual destination.

Issues of concern in outdoor space design include security/safety versus privacy. The area needs to be and feel safe, yet have a human scale, a sense of enclosure, and the possibility for private interaction. Some of these seemingly conflicting qualities may be accommodated through the use of overlook and transparent screening (including use of landscape materials), and the encouragement of a sense of territoriality.
Solar access is of utmost importance for usable outdoor space in this climate. The space must be largely south-facing and care must be taken that it is not excessively shaded by adjacent buildings. Yet provision must be made for protection from the weather, and from the sun for use during the hottest days of the summer.
In a study conducted in Vancouver, British Columbia all of the following were mentioned by users as adding to the attractiveness of well used plazas: o a changing population of people to observe o distinctive (in form, color or texture) plant materials o complex forms of fountains and sculptures o color schemes and brightness in pavements and surface textures
o space articulation (nooks, corners, level changes)
The researchers conclude that qualities of small but "busy" open spaces include dense furnishing, attractive focal elements, defined edges and pedestrian circulation channels.
William Whyte in studying the large plaza spaces of New York City found that "sit-ability is thekev to plaza use." He concludes that ledges, of the right height and depth, and steps are often the favored places to sit, and that if chairs are provided they should be free and movable so that users may form their own clusters or spots of solitude. With the large plazas, street corners are favored locations for sitters as it is there that activity and variety are densest. For Whyte the connection of plaza to streetscape is essential as it is really the continuous promenade of people that is the attraction of these urban outdoor spaces.
The following is a summary of the patterns from Christopher Alexander's The Pattern Language, which apply to urban open space:

o a sense of enclosure is needed o people like to sit so that they are protected to their backs and they look out toward some larger opening beyond the immediate space, o courtyards need to have natural traffic flow through them
o to size a public outdoor area, estimate she number of people using it at any given moment and allow 150 to 300 square feet per person.


6 C
Site Development
Open Space -
o attempt 20% of total land area (9472 sq.ft.) o must contain seating stationary and/or moveable o should have open area for possible small concerts, performances, ice cream vendors, etc.
o should have seating area with high visibility to surrounding space o should have more private, sequestered seating area o should have adjacency to restaurant and provision of area for outdoor dining
o should have natural site circulation paths passing through o must be south-facing and have excellent solar access o must have security provided by night-lighting, overlook and terri tori ality
o should have sense of enclosure
o should have connection to 15th Street visual or otherwise o must provide protection from inclement weather and summer sun, at least in some areas o must drain adequately
o should connect with and be readily accessible to all other uses on the site
o should provide a view beyond the immediate area
o should be well landscaped and possibly contain sculpture or a fountain Pathways -
o must connect all areas and uses on the site o must connect with surrounding streets
o connection from center of site to 15th Street must be very public, to Umatilla Street less so, to Central/W. 28th Street may be private if this is area where residential development occurs, o in some areas retail stores should front along an on-site pathway, perhaps as an arcade or promenade .
o 15th Street sidewalk must be maintained as retail frontage to connect with and enhance neighboring retail

Pathways, continued -
o must have security provided by night-lighting and good visibility
o must have clear separation between circulation for pedestrians, autos, service vehicles
o materials used should be durable, easily maintained, and distinctive in appearance so as to form an easily perceived circulation system
Parking and Loading -
o 166 stalls required by present zoning (at 330 sq.ft, per stall =
54,780 sq.ft.), may consider reduction allowed by PUD rezoning
o parking structure will be below grade
o access to structure will be from Central Street and/or Umatilla Street (if Umatilla can be converted to 2 way traffic flow rather than present one way status)
o pedestrian connection from parking to various site use areas must be direct, easily located and easily differentiated between (if more than one)
o 2 loading bays required (minimum dimensions of 10 feet wide, 35 feet long, 14 feet high)
o loading bays must connect directly with service accessways in retail and office structures.
General -
o corner position at 15th and Central Streets should be used in some si gni ficant way
o attention must be paid to planned or suggested new development on adjacent blocks high density housing across Umatilla Street, mixed-use across 15th Street.

Building Program
Retail Space -
o gross 10,500 sq.ft, leasable 9,450 sq.ft.
o to include the following uses: general food store @ 4000 sq.ft.
restaurant @ 2500 sq.ft, drug store @ 950 sq.ft, specialty food store @ 500 sq.ft.
3 small retail spaces @ 500 sq.ft, each = 1500 sq.ft.
o spaces should be flexible so that they can be subdivided to form smaller shops (minimum 250 sq.ft.), or combined to form larger spaces o exposure of store fronts to foot traffic must be excellent o exposure to auto traffic on 15th Street must be encouraged wherever possible
o easy service access to every shop must be developed, preferably with absolute separation between service and customer traffic o approximately 30 foot column bays are suggested for flexibility and economi cs
o store depth of 50 feet should be considered o all stores must be provided with HVAC and lighting systems o some spaces require plumbing (restaurant, grocery, specialty food), others must have option to bring plumbing in o must be restroom facilities readily available for both employee and customer use.
Office Space -
o gross 38,000 sq.ft, leasable 34,200 sq.ft.
o probably to occupy 3 floor levels; 2nd, 3rd, and 4th floors above grade o must have vertical circulation and restroom core
o must be extremely flexible space to provide leasing options for small or large areas

Office Space, continued -
o 30 feet is maximum suggested depth from exterior wall to interior divising wall of office suites
o employee and visitor access must be clearly discernable and readily located at street level, and in parking garage if access point occurs there
o service access way must be provided
o solar impact on building must be considered, and used for benefit or controlled
o HVAC and lighting systems must be provided to all spaces in the bui1di ng
o 30 foot column bay spacing and 12 foot floor to floor height are suggested for reasons of flexibility
Residential Units -
o 25 units 0 average of 1000 sq.ft, each = 25,000 sq.ft, o will be considered schematically only
o should relate to old residential enclave at southwest corner of block o with regard to site as whole must be the most private area o should have easy access to rest of site, yet be secured o should have direct access from parking garage
General -
o materials, forms and details of buildings should be compatible with the existing historic structures on 15th Street o attempt must be made to honor 40 foot height limit on new structures o building massing should reflect the hillside topography o views off the site, especially downton skyline view, should be maintained and used advantageously wherever possible o restrooms for public use should be provided and be readily accessible from retail area and open space
o small office and storage area for site maintenance people and equipment should be provided

For Thesis

Outline Schedule for Thesis Work -
o Generation of alternative design concepts: 4 weeks, January 18 to February 15, 1982.
o Selection of preferred alternate: .5 weeks, February 15 to February 18. o Design and development: 5.5 weeks, February 18 to March 29. o Production of presentation: 5 weeks, March 29 to May 3+.
The Presentation -
The product of my thesis work will be the traditional drawings: site plans, floor plans, elevations, sections, etc. A model depicting my project in the context of the neighborhood will be built. This model, or an additional one, should be at a scale large enough to show architectural details to an adequate degree. Photography, probably as slides, will be used in the presentation to show existing site and context, design ideas and progression, and whatever else appears appropriate. Refreshments will be served.
The Advisors -
o Paul Heath, UCD Professor thesis instructor, principal advisor on architectural and urban design, o William Abney, Architect advisor on architectural design o North Denver Gateway, a public organization to promote and control development in North Denver client group and advisor on neighborhood needs.
o Beth Travis, member of Jefferson-Highlands-Sunnyside Neighborhood
Organization, former Construction Coordinator and Manager of "The Market" at Larimer Square advisor on restaurant design and site neighborhood, o John Koons, Structural Engineer advisor on structural systems and desi gn.
o Davis Holder, UCD Professor advisor on structural systems and design, o Gary Long, Director of Architecture Program at UCD advisor on mechanical systems.


7 2
Bill Abney, Architect; general guidance
Rudy Castro, Highland Neighborhood Planner; present Planning Office attitude toward Highland
David Cole, Member of JHS and North Denver Gateway; neighborhood opinion on development in Highland Bluffs area.
Eric Cummings, Architect at Liebman, Williams and Ellis; design of
proposed development at 15th and 16th Streets, Central and Boulder Streets.
Paul Heath, UCD Professor; architectural programming.
John Ludwig, Landscape Architect; advice regarding existing site vegetation.
Sharon McNiff, Marketing Manager for Writer Corporation; allocation of retail space at Writer Square.
Karen Patterson, Preservation Office at Colorado Historical Society; information regarding listing on National Register of Historic PI aces.
John Prosser, Director of Urban Design Program at UCD; advice regarding developer concerns and planning strategy.
Mary Rae, Realtor; information regarding development at 15th and 16th Streets, Central and Boulder Streets.
Ralph Riggs, present site owner; partial site survey.
Doug Seagren, Developer at Western Skies; financial analysis procedure.
Richard Smith, Architect at Barker, Rinker, Seacat; design of Writer Square.
Jefferson Highland Sunnyside Neighborhood Association; neighborhood attitudes toward local development.
North Denver Gateway; neighborhood attitudes towards and efforts to control local development.
UCD Interdiscipiinary Design Studio on Highland Bluffs Neighborhood Development; recommendations and guidelines for development (Chris Nielsen and John Yonushewski; financial analysis procedure).

Books & Reports
Alexander, Christopher, et al. A Pattern Language. New York: Oxford University Press, 1977.
Baist. Real Estate Atlas: Surveys of Denver, 1905.
Baker, Geoffrey and Bruno Funaro. Shopping Centers: Design and Operation.
New York: Reinhold Publishing Co., 1951.
City and County of Denver; Denver Building Code. 1975, amended through 1 979.
City and County of Denver; Zoning Ordinance. 1980.
DeChiara, Joseph (editor). Time-Saver Standards for Building Types.
New York: McGraw-Hill Book Co., 1980.
Denver Planning Office; A Comprehensive Plan for Denver, May, 1978.
Denver Planning Office; Denver Inventory: Appendix Volume I of A Plan for Historic Preservation in Denver. June, 1977.
Denver Planning Office; Highland Neighborhood Plan. October, 1975.
Denver Planning Office; Planning with Climate and Solar Energy. 1980.
Denver Planning Office; Trends and Issues; Land Use and Physical Development in Denver. January, 1975.
Highland Place Associates; Highland Place Commercial Properties. October, 1979
Hoyt, Charles K. Buildings for Commerce and Industry. New York: McGraw-Hill Book Company, 1978.
Krinsky, Carol H. Rockefeller Center. New York: Oxford University Press, 1978.
McKeever, J. Ross (editor). The Community Builders Handbook. Washington D.C.: The Urban Land Institute. 1968, 1980.
Mazria, Edward. The Passive Solar Energy Book. Rodghe Press, Emmaus, PA, 1979
Morris, Langdon. Denver Landmarks, Charles W. Clewerth, Denver, Colorado, 1979
Redstone, Louis G. New Dimensions in Shopping Centers and Stores. New York: McGraw-Hill Book Co., 1973.

Robinson. Atlas of the City of Denver, 1887.
Sanborn Map Company. Insurance Maps of Denver, Colorado. New York.
1930, with revisions through 1950.
Schmertz, Mildred F. (editor). Office Building Design. New York: McGraw-Hill Book Co., 1975.
Smiley, Jerome C. History of Denver. Denver: The Times-Sun Publishing Co., 1901 .
Stern, Robert A.M. New Directions in American Architecture. New York: Braziller, 1969.
Taylor, Lisa (editor). Urban Open Space. New York: Rizzoli, 1979.
THK Associates, Inc.; Highland Place Market Analysis of Redevelopment Potenti al April, 1979.
UCD Design Team (Design 700 Studio). Highland Bluffs Neighborhood Development Guidelines. University of Colorado at Denver,
Fall, 1981 .
Whyte, William H. The Social Life of Small Urban Spaces. Washington, D. The Conservation Foundation, 1980.
Wiberg, Ruth E. Rediscovering Northwest Denver. Denver: Bradford Printing Company. 1976.
Witherspoon, Robert E. et al. Mixed-Use Developments: New Ways of Land Use. Washington D.C.: Urban Land Institute, 1976.

"Appearance, Function, Privacy Valued Most by Office Workers", AIA Journal. January, 1979. Pg. 28.
Ashton, John. "The Bluffs: Developers covet what artists cherish",
Rocky Mountain News. December 4, 1981. pg. 49-C+.
Campbell, Robert. "Evaluation Boston's 'Upper of Urbanity'", AIA Journal .
June, 1979.
Canty, Donald. "Evaluation: Single Complex City Core", AIA Journal .
June, 1979
Canty, Donald. "Market Street, San Francisco", AIA Journal August, 1980.
"Checklist for Mixed-Use Neophytes", Housing. May, 1980. pp. 44-45.
"Citicorp Center: A megastructure that ties into the street. William Whyte assesses New York's new mixed-use development."
Urban Design. Spring, 1978. pp. 23-25.
Demarest, Michael. "He Digs Downtown: For Master Planner James Rouse,
urban life is a festival." Time. August 24, 1981. pp. 42-53.
Dixon, John M. "Prime Square-Footage", Progressive Architecture.
October, 1978.
Knowles, Ralph. "Solar Access and Urban Form", AIA Journal Febuary, 1980. pp. 42-49.
McKenzie, J. Stewart and Ricki L. McKenzie. "Composing Urban Spaces for Security, Privacy and Overlook", Landscape Architecture.
September, 1978. pp. 392-398.
"Neighborhood Shopping Centers: Where to put them, how to fill them up",
Housing. September, 1980. pp. 38-40.
"Office Buildings A Building Type Study", Architectural Record. March, 1979. "Retail Malls", Architectural Record. February, 1979.
Ryder, Sharon Lee. "A Rousing Place", Progressive Architecture. February, 1976. "Shopping Centers Issue", AIA Journal July, 1978.
"Shopping Malls", Progressive Architecture. December 1978. pp. 49-63.

"Toward the Workability of the Workplace", Architectural Record. Mid-August, 1980. pp. 70-75.
"Urban Open Space Issue", Landscape Architecture. November, 1978. "Urban Shopping Centers Issue", Progressive Architecture. July, 1981.

may 1982

project summary
Site Area 47,360 sq.ft.
Total Building Area 78,800 sq.ft.
Parking Garage Area 63,700 sq.ft.
Retail Area net 9,178 sq.ft.
gross 10,680 sq.ft.
3 shops @ 500 sq.ft.
1 shop @ 675 sq.ft.
1 shop (drug store) @ 928 sq.ft.
1 shop (grocery) @ 3625 sq.ft.
1 restaurant @ 2450 sq.ft.
Office Area gross 46,432 sq.ft.
Residential Area 27 units @ 21,652 sq.ft.
3 3 bedroom townhouses @ 1300 sq.ft.
8 2 bedroom townhouses @ 970 sq.ft.
8 1 bedroom apartments, 6 @ 704 sq.ft
2 @ 750 sq.ft
8 studio apertments, 6 @ 528 sq.ft.
2 @ 550 sq.ft.
Parking 131 total spaces 7 handicapped 68 standard 56 compact

> ,
yi- l / ' >§1
. - ^*r

A Development
On The Highland Binff
3wutn K Xandeun TOrttiis project U. A reli. at Hair, of Colorado May 10*32


i) i

L nty*.z'm n i. j

\r | | 4
,-4. i

. T7T ill '#
a 1] rlT rfj i 1
* J

i |

tn hfi
Structural Systems
a y
cWIt -

14 t
i V.
HVAG Systems