I never thought I would find plastic bags so evocative. But they are whirling around the dome of the Colorado State Capitol like a fluffy moon.

Yes, the plastic bag ban and plastic foam container ban will happen, but it will take some time. Here’s the timeline: Approved timeline for plastic bans January 2023 - January 2024: 10-cent fee imposed on paper, plastic bagsJanuary 2024: Single-use plastic bags banned at most stores unless the store still has a surplus of plastic …

If you had not heard about the Tulsa Race Massacre before this week, you certainly have heard about now.

That’s because there have been stories and documentaries for more over a week – as it should be -- so people understand the terror that struck the Greenwood neighborhood in Tulsa a century ago. Today, President Biden is meeting with survivors of the 1921 attack by a white mob that destroyed a prosperous Black neighborhood …

Remember the brouhaha in February 2020, when the former person in the White House decided that all new federal buildings should follow “Making Federal Buildings Beautiful Again”?

Well, that was a question, but it didn’t make much sense. The people who had been put on the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts in Washington, D.C., wanted to bow to the previous president. There was “explicit language endorsing ‘Spanish colonial and other Mediterranean styles generally found in Florida,’ thus including Trump’s privately owned Mar-a-Lago …

The month of May traditionally is devoted to preservation, but in Denver, be careful. However, La Alma Lincoln Park, there is a glimmer of hope to save history, memory, and architecture.

Still smarting over the unfortunate scrape of the Channel7 Building, it takes a while to clear out the anger, so it was necessary to wander around Denver last week to seeing what is going on – and up or down. But yesterday, it was time to drive around La Alma Lincoln Park to get a …

The Channel7 Building was ditched as a landmark, when Denver City Council said it wasn’t beautiful enough and didn’t have enough adjectives. Hello: Anywhere U.S.A

So, Monday night, 40 people signed up to speak about the Denver Channel7 Building, which proposed landmarking from three applicants in the community. I know all three of them: two attorneys and one architect. They believed that the building at 123 Speer Boulevard was impressive, with a Brutalist tower that could support not just landmarking …

Since we’ve been dealing with a pandemic for more than a year, we’ve learned a lot of medical information, but there is so much more to learn in the past.

Last Sunday, The New York Times magazine published The Health Issue. At first, I thought at times it is overwhelming to understand what is going on concerning COVID-19 and its growing numbers of variants. But that’s what viruses do, apparently. But beyond the virus, taking a look about what was going on centuries ago, there was a …

Now more groups want to get on board to deal with the Denver7 Building. Before, it seemed so simple, but not now.

Monday night, May 3, there was a quick reference to the Denver7 Building, a precursor to the public hearing on Monday, May 10. District 10 Council Representative Chris Hinds spoke up because the Denver7 Building is in his district, at 123 Speer Boulevard.  He said that he had talked to the press about this issue, …

Newspapers now usually don’t write very much about a preservation issue, but when they do, it can be eye-opening.

That’s eye-opening because in a story in today’s Denver Post, the first paragraph reads: “The brute stands five stories tall at the intersection of Speer Boulevard and Lincoln Street in Denver, wrapped in panels of red Colorado sandstone and concrete, its grids of rectangular windows facing every direction but north.” Brute? Really? Like the Incredible Hulk or …

For scooters and bikes, the third charm on Tuesday’s council committee meeting to move the contracts to the full Denver City Council.

The continuing saga concerns what the city should do about launching a new type of program involving scooters and bikes. Yesterday, the third committee meeting sounded sort of the same, but not completely. As before, the presentations to the Land Use, Transportation and Infrastructure committee were given by those who work in the Department of …

Dear Denver: Please pick up your trash. Not just for Earth Day, but every day.

Once upon a time, there was not much trash everywhere in this city. Now, Denver is full of it.  So: People coming here from other states – and here, too -- please stop pitching bags of trash out of your car window. Put it in your waste bin.  Please pick up your dog’s poop. Your …

If there is a chance the applicants and the owners could come together, it would mean that the Channel7 building could be re-used. Something else could still be built on the rest of the property, and it could be even taller.

Call it horse-trading, but it was not totally kumbaya. However: From the beginning, the three people want to save the Channel7 building to undergo adaptive re-use. Save the exterior, and figure out a new interior for a new use.  The Land Use, Transportation and Infrastructure Committee met Tuesday to decide whether the Channel7 octagonal building …

When people stand up to remember dark times, such as Amache, the World War II internment camp is getting more support in Congress from two Colorado representatives. The push began in 2006, so…

MCA Denver was located in a renovated fish market in Sakura Square, before there was land donated for the museum on Delgany Street. Visiting the museum in Sakura Square was great because it was in a part of Denver that had a special meaning. What intrigued me was a bust of Governor Ralph Carr, who …

Learning from others is important, especially when Latino and Chicano residents know their history in Denver — and today.

This past Saturday morning, Denver’s Community Planning and Development (CPD) held a Zoom meeting, and about 70 people were online.  The idea was to come up with information to bolster history, like how Latino and Chicano residents came to Denver and how they created their neighborhoods, and how they struggled for their rights and dignity. …

David and Goliath can continue to discuss the future of the Channel7 building, but then when it goes to city council, do you want a building — or a plaque?

Yesterday’s Denver Landmark Preservation Commission meeting had a strange vibe when it came to the public hearing involving a tower at 123 Speer Boulevard. An owner-opposed application is always a long haul, and when the owner has the ability and wealth to seek support, the process can become less than pleasant. Of course, going to …

Those with no housing in Denver suffer, especially as the rents and prices have ballooned. But this is not new.

In the early years of Denver, having no housing was bad, and much worse. A two-part piece titled Homeless in Denver was in the newsletter for the Denver Public Library Western History and Genealogy Department. The author is Alex Hernandez, a reference librarian in that department -- and the beginning is beyond bleak. (This department, which …

No, this photograph is not a mistake, but the scooters seem to be in a tug-of-war. Because something is missing.

Yesterday, Denver’s Land Use, Transportation & Infrastructure Committee received more information from the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure, or DOTI, to help the city council representatives on the committee to push it along to the full council. But that did not happen; the next meeting about the scooter situation will be on Tuesday, April 27.  …

Why is it that developers or owners decide to submit the most totally crummy photographs in Denver’s application to tear a building down?

Perhaps, it’s because those who deal with the city’s Certificate of Demolition Eligibility process and their application submissions should be replaced by another apartment building? After all, submitting the kill-the-building application costs $250, while the three people who must cough up $875 because they are not owners of the building/s. An owner who wants to have …

Remember the pussy hats? Even before that pink wave, the concept of knitting somehow got political.

This has been a sad and horrible week, difficult to sleep, stop watching the news about a massacre, and why so many guns. It seemed absolutely correct to stay up late last night to read The New Yorker. This is the Style & Design Issue, which is always dreamy, even though many of us are in …

Call it a re-run, but it holds up after almost a year: We still want to see the mountains.

“The concept of a view plane was codified about 70 years ago in an ordinance by the City and County of Denver, preserving the views of the mountains to the west. They serve as a backdrop for beauty, and for residents and visitors who love those views. Driving into Denver from the east to move …

Because perhaps we will only see snow this weekend, covering everything.

Something more meaningful seemed right today. But then, I saw a lengthy story on Denverite that has a lot of good information. Yes: This weekend, it’s about snow.  For anyone who has lived in Colorado, things can become murky. Things also can be treacherous. Having lived through several big dumps – including the six blizzards in a …

When someone wants to know what will be built on a piece of land, but only can address the rezoning: It’s, uh, interesting.

It’s sort of like someone gives you a great bottle of wine, but you can only look at the label. But last night, the Denver City Council opened a public hearing, and the council members had a lot of questions and comments. Why? The land at 4700 East Evans Avenue was to change the zoning classification, …

“Jacob Lawrence’s Art Is Larger Than It Looks.” That’s an old headline, but it still works.

For anyone who loves art, it’s not unusual that someone might find a painting or a sculpture in an attic or a garage, and think it might be worth something. Of course, not usually, but in the news this week, there are numerous articles about two New York residents who each discovered that they had a …

“The cheese grater. Coarse.”

Dezeen Weekly is a good read, even though it sometimes can be snarky when commenters take on a building or an interior.  This week’s Dezeen included a building to be constructed in Denver. Jeanne Gang’s Populus – the three-sided hotel building to be located on West Colfax Avenue -- is sort of a surprise. What is unusual, architecture and design online posting usually takes us around …

Half a million people have died of COVID-19 in the United States as of this week.

Though a count of The New York Times database had not reached that figure, but it will reach it. And according to that database, “Denver County is at a very high risk level.” Just what I wanted to hear! Still, the database noted that cases, deaths and hospitalizations in Denver County were way down.  When a president …

The South Ramp at Red Rocks will be demolished once there is enough information to build a new one.

Back in July 2019 – which seems a century ago – there was a lengthy Denver Landmark Preservation Commission meeting to deal with the demolishing of the South Ramp at Red Rocks. It was a way for people who were heading up to the amphitheatre, but the ramp was growing old, and city officials were …

Talk about envious: When following the plans and views for Pancratia Hall at Loretto Heights, who wouldn’t want to be in there?

Today’s Denverite offers a tour of the former Pancratia Hall, which is being turned into the Pancratia Hall Lofts. It is a striking beginning, chronicled by a reporter and a photographer. In the way back when we actually went to meetings, I started following the fate of the Loretto Heights Campus, which was purchased by Westside Investment Partners, Inc. …

Talk about dereliction of duty: I am supposed to be working on a project, but this week I’m glued to the television.

Taking a break is because viewing the videos over the past three days has been making nightmares.  So for a change, I’ve read (and watched) something easier on the heart. A family that owns the Axton Ranch that straddles Jefferson and Gilpin counties is donating 450 acres to create a mountain park for Denver. It’s …

Racism, classism, xenophobia: Those words were often repeated by numerous people who signed up to speak for the update of the group-living amendment. And to make Denver better.

The Denver City Council meeting last night discussed a major change for Denver. The public hearing started at about 6 p.m. and ended around 1:30 this morning. (The photo above is credited by the Denver City Council and at the top of a Westword story.) The topic was the Group Living Text Amendment.  More than 1,140 letters were …

“Group living” is going to be teed up at Denver City Council on Monday. Will it be OK’d easily, with who knows how many hours of discussion?

Snacks will be by my side. Some of this group living plan makes sense, but then it gets a little more complicated. For three years or more, Senior City Planner Andrew Webb in Community Planning and Development has been putting a plan together. I watched two of the city council committee meetings, one in September …

We love libraries, although many are closed right now. Still, Denver’s library officials are planning for the future, at some point.

Seems that every neighborhood should have a library. During a meeting last week with members of a city council committee learned that branch libraries are needed in RiverNorth (better known as RiNo), Globeville, and Westwood. (The photo above was posted on Denverite today, taken by Kevin J. Beaty.) But with a combination of the RiNo Art District …

For one happy day, it was not a time to read sad things. But now, we’re back to reality.

This past Wednesday, The Colorado Sun ran a story with this headline: “How one block on Pearl Street represents Denver’s stubborn homelessness crisis.” The reporter was Jennifer Brown, who covered all the bases: the homeless people, the fearful neighbors, the unsanctioned camps, the sanctioned camps, the District 10 City Council representative, having problems to protect his restaurant, …

The countdown to the inauguration is coming soon, like Wednesday. Fingers crossed that all goes well.

We had been warned in Denver that there might be protesters at the Colorado Capitol on Sunday, but from one report it appeared that there were more reporters than those wanting to protest. If you don’t hear the police helicopter whirling above my building, it is pretty quiet. It’s a relief, and I hope that …

David and Goliath are back in town. Channel7’s beautiful tower has supporters, but Goliath undoubtedly will not care all about adaptive re-use.

A few months ago, there was a story about Channel7’s owner wanting to sell the buildings on the land to a developer (surprise!) to build an apartment building. Scripps Media is the applicant, but apparently is not interested about anything except demolition. (E. W. Scripps Co. is Denver7’s parent company.)  But things have moved along, like …

January 6, 2021, is a day we all need to remember. Ugly, unhinged, and so many other words, but “peaceful transition of power” is not in their vocabulary.

“We Are the Storm” was the title of yesterday’s pro-Trump protest at the Colorado Capitol. Nah, you’re not the storm. You’ve lost your bearings. And you need to go home and rethink your life, under the spell of a president who also has lost his bearings and his inability to understand that a loss is …

When neighborhoods melt away, so do the people who had lived there.

That’s what prompted a new Facebook page titled Northeast Denver Love & History. Calvin Williamson had grown up in Denver, but moved to New York while creating that Facebook page. As a teenager, he spent a lot of time looking at photographs in the downtown library that showed those who lived in predominantly black neighborhoods. …

2020 has been a difficult year, but we have learned about the word “reckoning.” We need to look into our hearts, but use our brains.

Oh, 2020: I was so looking forward to you, with a new election (!!!!!), more travels, and more things to do. Uh: The election did happen, but it has been a hard-fought battle, but the rest of this year has just been strange, mainly because the virus that was flying around the earth was killing …

Sunday’s The New York Times Magazine includes “A Year of Haunted by Loss.” One person in Denver was included: Freddy Rodriguez, Sr.

The last issue of every year, The Times offers a round-up of those who have passed away. It’s a mix of those we recognize, but others who are new to us. This year, The Times added a lengthy beginning of those who died of COVID-19 or complications of the virus. Rodriguez’s story is one of various families who have …

Serenity is the best gift this year. It helps to wash away the anxiety, fear and unhappiness of 2020.

Usually, I travel to see my family over the holidays, but it just didn’t feel right now. Trips for special events there earlier this year seemed fine, but now, with more and more virus cases……. No. Rather than post a beautiful flower, it’s more important to me to use a photograph of a trip last …

Colorado’s mighty cultural sector can tap into $7.5 million from a bill voted on earlier this month.

It’s sort of like Washington, D.C., but closer to home and with much less money. But with an Arts Relief Fund, we want cultural programs in Colorado to survive -- and dare we hope they will thrive. Colorado Creative Industries, or CCI, will manage those funds. CCI is a division of the Office of Economic …

Two Safe Outdoor Spaces in Denver may help those with no homes. But this is a drop in the bucket.

In mid-November, one of my neighbors received an anonymous letter with a headline in big type: “Attention Uptown Denver Property Owner / Occupant: Permanent Homeless Encampment to be Opened December 1, 2020.”  Well, that opened our eyes, and this letter – which later also was taped on the door of my building – had a …

“60 Minutes” last night explored the concept of “excited delirium” and the use of ketamine, focusing on the death of Elijah McClain of Aurora (but others, too).

The excited delirium syndrome has become a term that some find problematic, especially when police use ketamine to subdue someone who has been arrested.  And unless you have lived in a cave for the more than a year, the death of Elijah McClain has shocked the country in terms of what happened to this 23-year-old …

It’s great to be hypnotized while watching stock footage on the news, as the little glass vials swirl around.

They will soon be coming our way, bit by bit. Being hypnotized is better than worrying about, well, whether the Supreme Court might consider those who want to reverse the votes in the four swing states.  Or, whether a group of Colorado Republicans on the state’s Audit Committee will hold a meeting next Tuesday to …

Remember when we wrote letters, in ink and on paper? And those holiday letters that were tracking an entire year (whether we wanted it or not)?

As we near the end of this year – the incredibly strange year of 2020 – it’s time for it to go away. Plumbers, locksmiths, checking out the stove – things go awry everywhere. And when an amaryllis with giant blossoms needs to be propped up by a stand mixer so it does not plummet …

If I had the InDesign program, I would have created a tear running down this colorful bear’s face.

That’s how unhappy the situation has become for the arts in our metro area, but our state also is in a bind when it comes to cultural pursuits. Earlier this week, the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District released an impact survey dealing with COVID-19. The SCFD is made up of seven counties (including Denver) that …

Remember when hospitals and agencies were told not to send statistics about COVID-19 to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention but instead to a different agency? Well, apparently it has been a mess.

It seems so long ago, but it was only in July. There was quite a bit of uncertainty when the administration wanted the data in their own little corner.  Last night, after trying to wean myself from watching political programs, I figured it would be OK to watch one little hour. And that’s when the …

The true meaning of giving: “Daddy” Bruce Randolph’s work continues today.

When Bruce Randolph came to Denver, he had almost no money, but he loved to cook. This was in 1963. He went to a bank and was able to receive a small loan to build a barbecue cooker and then rent a building.  He worked out of a building at 34th and Gilpin – and, amazingly, …

There probably will be a new sculpture on the Colorado State Capitol grounds, and it will be quite different. But it’s necessary to think about this, because somewhere here is a reckoning.

As someone who has written about public art in Denver, usually there are several artist applicants, and then a panel of jurors would select one artist for the project. But this time, the Capitol Building Advisory Committee voted 7-2 to accept a sculpture that represents a Native American woman mourning after losing her family members …

Denver’s Neighborhood Sidewalk Repair Program needs some help, and the city’s auditor has laid things out on fixing it.

As we face virus cases spiking all over the country, and we have an alleged leader trying to reverse votes to kidnap an election, perhaps we should think about something less frightening: Let’s focus on sidewalks.  In the news yesterday, there were stories about the fact that this program had gone quiet. For those of …