Apparently, the mid-1980s was the last time a new high rise office building was built in Denver, Colorado. We know what happened then and why skyscraper construction halted (hint: construction loans/S+L Crisis); knock on wood…S+L 2.0?? Recently, Westfield Development announced plans to build the most energy efficient high rise in downtown Denver, 1800 Larimer–actually, it’s a $150 million, 22 story, 500,000 square foot, energy-efficient, proposed LEED Silver tower. Westfield Development President Rich McClintock said, "if it is not a sustainable building, it is outdated." I couldn’t agree more.
This LoDo area building was designed by Denver-based RNL Design. Some of the features include the following: subfloor air distribution system; 9-foot, 6-inch floor-to-ceiling windows; state-of-the-art health club for tenants; a half-acre terrace parklike environment 20 feet off the ground; tenant controlled temperature system; blue + gray glass facade; trees in the lobby; and a 30-foot high "wall of water" inside the lobby. I’m excited that new construction is going green, but I will say that Denver is working hard to make the right choices. This green building is, after all, only a small kog in the greater machine initiated by Denver’s Mayor Hickenlooper called Greenprint Denver.
I keep saying this, but the smartest cities are also the greenest: San Francisco, Portland, Denver, Austin, Chicago, and a trailing Salt Lake City. The human capital + brain power of these cities is really mind-boggling, so where are you going to live? Via RMN.
UPDATE: According to the global votes of over 100,000 people, Mayor Hickenlooper was ranked #9 in a survey of best mayors in the world that have made long-lasting contributions to their cities. Only one other US mayor made the list.