TriVista on Speer Update #1

We have some exciting news for the Golden Triangle neighborhood! One of the worst surface lots along Speer Boulevard is now disappearing before our eyes. What was formally known as Legacy Speer, TriVista on Speer is now under construction. Need a refresher? We probably all do as we announced this project just over a year ago. Head on over to that announcement post for project renderings, aerials, and details. In short, this will consist of 322 apartment units contained in a seven-story building.

Let’s start out with a panorama of the project site. Here we can see that the asphalt is getting torn up so excavation can begin.

To really show the true impact this project will make in the Golden Triangle neighborhood and Speer Boulevard, below are two photos showing how large the project site is.

Yet another infill project kicks off eradicating a surface lot, and helping repair Denver’s urban fabric. How exciting!

By | 2017-10-15T09:51:20+00:00 February 20, 2017|Categories: Golden Triangle, Infill, Residential, Urbanism|Tags: |13 Comments

13 Comments

  1. Sam February 21, 2017 at 7:29 am

    I was upset about the lack of commercial space in this building until I realized the developers only get seven-ish stories of room and King Sooper’s and Starbucks are both less than a block away.

    I’m very excited to see this and all the other tumbleweed parking lots on Speer be developed. It’s great that these sites along Speer have forced the architect/developer’s hand to build something other than perfect rectangles.

    I feel bad for whoever ends up in a ground-floor unit. I bet those units will be hard to lease. “Affordable housing”, perhaps?

    Now we’ll just have to wait and see what the cladding on the building ends up looking like.

    • Dan February 21, 2017 at 11:00 am

      Per the original post:

      The Legacy on Speer apartments will consist of a seven-story building, with five levels of residential units on top of a two-story podium that contains about 445 parking spaces for a residential unit/parking space ratio of approximately 1.40. Ground-floor residential units will wrap the parking around the building perimeter to provide an attractive pedestrian-oriented presence along the sidewalk.

      I’m sure they’ll make the ground floor units attracitve (like what 1800 block https://www.google.com/maps/@39.7448565,-104.9815905,3a,75y,5.98h,96.06t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sUh6Lqj0tX-qqoIs1fVlvUQ!2e0!7i13312!8i6656) or Denizen (https://www.google.com/maps/@39.7094475,-104.9923735,3a,38.2y,264.99h,80.64t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sX5d7bxqrv2MDgS54DS5njg!2e0!7i13312!8i6656)

    • Citizen Kane February 21, 2017 at 11:45 am

      Take a look at the site plan in the original post.
      This is really no different in terms of approach from the rectangles you deride – fit as many units as you can on the site and extrude up. This one just happens to be on a non-rectangular block.
      Look at the buried courtyards at the interior of the building – terrible, unusable space.
      This 5-10 story land yacht is just another missed opportunity for Denver to pursue the point-tower approach (think Confluence).
      Disappointing project from an urban design standpoint.
      Architecturally, this project is a mess. Full of disjointed ideas and poor massing decisions in the name of making something that “is not a typical rectangular box”. Lazy architecture driven by the developer’s bottom line.

  2. Ballpark resident February 22, 2017 at 12:15 am

    I don’t understand the criticism of the. Courtyard on the interior. Wasted space? Without the courtyards, the interior rooms of the building would not have a window to the outdoors. Don’t tenants want a place to BBQ and gather? or perhaps allow their dogs to get some sun?

    I also don’t understand the criticism of a developer trying to get as many units on a site as possible. Doesn’t that yeild a better return? Wouldn’t you do that if you were investing your money?

    Granted, if they build a crap project, then prospective tenants will choose to live elsewhere. But from the location, amenities, and design, I think this will be competitive in the market. I, for one, wouldn’t mind lounging by the pool overlooking Cherry Creek in the mountains in the foreground.

    • Citizen Kane February 22, 2017 at 12:40 pm

      I’d agree that the pool deck overlooking Speer is going to be a neat place to be – and I’m not questioning that.
      Have you ever been in an interior courtyard of a building like this? If not, I’d encourage you to do so.
      A courtyard like that, is of course a necessity to make those units viable (windows, natural ventilation, etc). But I would argue that a small, narrow courtyard with 5+ storys of building on all sides is very lousy place to be. Very little sunlight in the summer and none in the winter, 5+ storys of windows looking down on you. Not good.

      The developer trying to get as many units on the site is not in-and-of-itself a problem. And, it’s of course a financial necessity for the project to happen.
      What I take issue with is simply exturding that floorplan up to the maximu allowed height, painting some different materials on there and calling it a day. That is lazy architecture (I could argue that it’s not really architecture at all).

      My point is that even given the many constraints (site, financial, developmental, code, city, zoning, etc). That the architect and developer can and should come up with something better than this lipstick on a pig approach.

      • Paul February 23, 2017 at 9:57 am

        So why don’t architects can it with the interior courtyard meme and call this what it is- a light well?

        • Citizen Kane February 23, 2017 at 2:35 pm

          Yeah, I don’t disagree. An if it’s simply a light-well, you wouldn’t have to pretend to make it a nice space, or even inhabitable.
          It would be more cost effective in that sense. I like the appraoch, Paul.

    • Citizen Kane February 22, 2017 at 12:45 pm

      Just to further clarify.
      I do criticize many projects on this site. I also applaud others.
      I appreciate that the city is growing and improving. Projects like this one represent incremental improvement. Each surface lot that disappears is ultimately a victory and an improvement in the urban fabric of Denver.
      But I also see all of the shortcoming of projects like this (land yacht vs point tower), monotony of height, quality of materials, quality of design.
      I think that while many projects to some things well, there is so much room for improvement.
      I’m simply encouraging that improvement for the betterment of the city.

      • JerryG February 22, 2017 at 10:35 pm

        Can’t do a point towers here because this property is in the State Capitol view plane. Sucks, I know.

    • Dan February 22, 2017 at 1:27 pm

      I’ve noticed on this blog, many readers just like to criticize… Sometimes I’ll see a project with tons of positive comments, then all of a sudden some random person chimes in with “ugly; too tall/short; too whatever…” and it’s just ridiculous.

      I’ll admit I’ve vented frustrations with a few projects, however there will always be someone to complain about literally everything.

      It’s true this project might not be a boring rectangle simply because of the way this lot is shaped, but that in itself is a fortunate win… why complain about it?

  3. Jeff February 23, 2017 at 9:52 am

    At this point I will take any infill we can, and hopefully get it dense enough that one day some developers will finally step up and build something grand here

  4. Citizen Kane February 23, 2017 at 12:26 pm

    It seems like many on this site equate a rectange with ‘boring, bad architecture’ while anything that’s not a rectangle is somehow lauded as ‘not a boring rectangle’.
    I think this is a myopic understanding (lack there of) of architecture.

    The merits of a design are much more complicated than simply a general form or mass.

    So, for this project, simply not being a rectange (by virtue of its site) is not grounds for praising a project.

    • Freddie February 24, 2017 at 12:54 pm

      Well I think this is a sharp looking project. I like the way the massing is broken up along Speer by that huge setback. I like the way there are two different facades, separated by the setback, that face Speer – one that is all brick, dark, slender and vertical, and one that is mostly glass, light and horizontal – almost like two separate buildings. I like the way the colors and materials are separated. And as others have said, I like the unique shape of this parcel/massing. Judging by the comments here and following the announcement post, it seems basically everyone likes the look of this project and you’re the only one that doesn’t. I respect your opinion but I don’t think we’re shortsighted, as you’ve suggested, and I don’t think you’re necessarily any better at armchair architecting than anyone else. But anyway, to each his own I guess. It’s not like I haven’t done my fair share of complaining about “ugly” buildings on this blog.

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