This week I am featuring a series of sketches I created from a photoshoot I did last year of the 16th Street Mall in downtown Denver, Colorado. I liked the concept of using a sketching technique to present these scenes in a more artistic form than just photography.
As I mentioned in the post from last August, my wife and I worked in downtown Denver for a number of years prior to our move to San Diego. We were there during the “oil boom” of the 80’s. The downtown quadrant was a mass of cranes building many of the high-rise buildings you see today and it also saw the opening of the 16th Street Mall in 1982. We found it to be a very vibrant downtown and loved working there. The changes we saw in our time there was incredible, but I must say in the 30 years since then, what has been created and added makes it a very appealing urban center mixing large corporate headquarters with urban residential neighborhoods. Add to that, the inclusion of the major sports arenas (Broncos at Mile High Stadium, Coors Field and Pepsi Center), the Colorado Convention Center, the Downtown Aquarium, Children’s Museum, Elitch Gardens Theme & Water Park pulling the downtown experience out to the bike paths/park along the South Platte River and Cherry Creek.
The outdoor pedestrian mall spans about 15 to 16 blocks through the center of downtown connecting Union Station on one end to the State Capital on the other end. There are free shuttle buses continuously going up and down the mall augmenting the pedestrian experience.
The tower was constructed in 1910 as part of the Daniels and Fisher department store. At that time it was the tallest structure between the Mississippi River and California.
The tree lined mall connects numerous restaurants and stores along its length serving the large influx of workers during the day inhabiting the many corporate high-rises along with the numerous residential high-rises that populate the area below Union Station.
Historic Union Station has been completely refurbished and remodeled and now hosts a boutique hotel along with numerous restaurants. The station is a travel hub serving commuter rail and bus service along with Amtrak cross country train service.
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