Alexan Uptown Final Update

A major new residential development in Downtown’s Uptown district, Alexan Uptown, has recently been completed so let’s take a final look at this 12-story project that has added 372 homes to a steadily densifying neighborhood. Previously, the entire half block where Alexan Uptown now stands was an ugly surface parking lot. For all of our posts on Alexan Uptown, click here.

First, the central section of the tower facing Logan Street, followed by the views looking south from 20th Avenue and then north from near 19th Avenue:

Alexan Uptown front facade on Logan Street

Here we see the main entry and streetscape along Logan with another view of the tower’s Logan Street facade:

Part of the Alexan Uptown facade on Logan Street

In the first of these last two images, due to the shift between the downtown and metro street grids, we get a nice diagonal perspective of Alexan Uptown looking down Court Place from the Curtis Park neighborhood several blocks away. The second photo shows the alley side of the project from another grid-colliding intersection of Tremont/21st Street/20th Avenue/Grant Street.

Alexan Uptown looking southwest down Court Place in Curtis Park
Alexan Uptown alley side viewed from 21st and Tremont

That wraps up our coverage of Alexan Uptown. Welcome to the neighborhood!

By | 2017-09-20T06:51:12+00:00 September 19, 2017|Categories: Infill, Residential, Uptown, Urbanism|Tags: |15 Comments

15 Comments

  1. asdgadg September 19, 2017 at 10:28 am - Reply

    Cool looking building and great use of the space.

    And it covered up a crappy surface lot, too!

  2. Mike September 19, 2017 at 10:34 am - Reply

    This is quite possibly the ugliest new build in Denver Metro. All aboard the Land Barge…… The worst is that they built this directly in front of a beautiful residential building. In addition, this is in uptown which is a haven for lovely 1st floor retail making it a great neighborhood to walk in. Why couldn’t they at least anchor the street corners with retail/commercial space?????

    • Dan September 19, 2017 at 5:33 pm - Reply

      I’m not going so far as to call it the “ugliest”, if we’re being real about it there are plenty of new buildings in the area which could earn that honor. That said, I question the decision to cover the lower half with brick and then give it more of a bland, off-color facade on the upper half lacking any sort of texture or refinement… It literally looks half-finished.

      Aesthetic aside, I live in this area and have the “pleasure” of walking past the building almost every day. During these walks I’ve steadily seen pieces of the facade at the street level fall apart with the insulation revealing itself, specifically this occurred a few times in the white stucco section at the corner of 19th and Logan and had to be covered up. (at least I think it’s stucco, I’ll admit I’m ignorant in terms of the materials used on this project other than the obvious brick) In my eyes as a consumer, the building appeared to be falling apart before it was even fully constructed and this does not inspire me to drop nearly $2,000/month for a 1-bedroom apartment.

      Despite ALL of the above, I could have forgiven this a little bit if it offered quality retail at least somewhere, anywhere along the street but of course we all know that just didn’t happen. Trammell Crow may see a significant monetary gain on this property, however in my opinion they blew a huge opportunity to make something aesthetically pleasing that would also enliven this block – instead we see the same generic, objectively questionable design concepts that this company loves to put out around the city that doesn’t add to the pedestrian experience other than simply taking away parking spaces, and I am not excited to see the plethora of other Alexan projects going up, some of which only a few blocks away.

      In summary, major lost opportunities for something so significant in scale.

      • Citizen Kane September 21, 2017 at 1:34 pm - Reply

        Couldn’t agree more about Trammell Crow. They’re from Texas and don’t give a ‘you know what’ about this city. These projects are designed to maximize their profit without any regard for the quality of space or pedestrian experience. It’s a shame.

        Kephart has proven once again to have little to no design or aesthetic competence. Their other gigantic dumps they’ve taken around town include Via (which rivals this as the single worst project in Denver’s recent history) and Alexan Arapaho Square (not as bad).

  3. Julio September 19, 2017 at 8:45 pm - Reply

    Yeah…this is not an attractive building. The rust and white just don’t look that great together. I like what they were doing with the brick and kind of wish they kept that somehow, although I know it would make it more expensive. Just kind of cheap looking as a result.

  4. Jonathon September 19, 2017 at 8:51 pm - Reply

    I agree with Mike. As a neighbor to this disgusting looking monstrosity, it adds no value or curb appeal to the neighborhood whatsoever. Just a stale boxy Tetris-looking apartment complex.

  5. JerryG September 20, 2017 at 9:59 am - Reply

    High contrast elements on a building are best done is small doses. If it was just that protruding, central ‘feature’ that was white and the rest of the white-colored portions a more muted color, then the result may not have been to bad. Of course, adding randomly attached protruding portions (also a high contrast color) on the upper half seems ridiculous as an architectural design. The reason land barges look like barges is that their masses are horizontal scaled. Traditional, well designed buildings are not; they are vertically scaled. That is why 1800 Market will be a breath of fresh air in terms of Denver’s current and future land barges. The architects broke up the masses to give them a more vertical appearance so that, from their perspective, the pedestrian is walking past multiple buildings. That approach could still be used with buildings on smaller budgets. The facade on each of those buildings going up on Welton could have easily been broken up to give the appearance of three buildings. Also, in dense, mixed-use neighborhoods, everyone of these large buildings should at least have a corner retail space.

    • Citizen Kane September 21, 2017 at 1:35 pm - Reply

      well said.

  6. Jim September 20, 2017 at 4:42 pm - Reply

    It looks like three buildings mashed together which seems to be the prevailing aesthetic these days. What ever happened to elegant restraint, fine detail or simplicity? It seems like the architects are trying to apply every idea they can possibly have into one building. You see this same design incompetence in building after building and our city is getting uglier and uglier by the week.

    • Citizen Kane September 21, 2017 at 1:37 pm - Reply

      not all architects. just this firm in particular.

  7. Ryan September 21, 2017 at 8:54 am - Reply

    Everyone is always talking about retail…good luck w/that…outside of coffee shops, dry cleaners, or if you are lucky a grocery store or restaurant Amazon and Walmart have and are destroying the retail industry as we once knew it…at least Walmart paid sales taxes over the years

    Also, as a long time resident of Washington DC public transportation is not what it is cracked up to be…maybe Denver’s is ok but public transportation most places is noisy, crowded, sometimes deadly and often unreliable…despite this I understand the need but believe me if you can afford a car in the city you want that parking space and will pay to have it especially when you have such tremendous beauty and recreational activities not far away…

  8. chachafish September 21, 2017 at 9:37 am - Reply

    I think it looks great. Consider this, when the Washington Monument was under construction, Mark Twain hated the design. He called it a,“memorial chimney”, with livestock “dozing in the holy calm of its protecting shadow.” A reviewer of the American Architect and Building News said, “It is to be regretted that ages are likely to elapse before the monument will fall down.” The Eiffel Tower was hated by eminent artists, including Guy de Maupassant and Alexandre Dumas. They signed a bitter letter to the minister of public works; “We protest with all our strength the useless and monstrous Eiffel Tower. The Eiffel Tower is without doubt the dishonour of Paris. Everyone feels it, everyone says it, everyone is profoundly saddened by it.” Local Parisians hated it calling it an “elephant”, a “giraffe”, and a “hulking metal beast crouched on all fours”. Guy de Maupassant later called it a, “tall skinny pyramid of iron ladders” and a, “disgraceful skeleton.” I guess getting flamed isn’t unique to the digital age 😉

  9. Ed M September 21, 2017 at 5:11 pm - Reply

    I find it very discouraging that anyone who participates on this website and is presumably more informed about urban aesthetics than the average person on the street would find this monstrosity to be marginally acceptable from an architectural point of view, let alone look “great.”

  10. Jim September 21, 2017 at 5:30 pm - Reply

    Thanks for the history lesson chachafish. …but this is no Washington Monument, nor is it an Eiffel Tower. No, this is ugly. It will always be ugly and will only get uglier with time. I could write a page or two on the details of ‘why’, but to sum it up. It looks like a middle school class project made out of cardboard. It’s The Nightmare before Christmas. A mash-up of geometries, materials and colors that don’t belong together. This building is so pre-occupied with being ‘cool’ and ‘fun’ that it’s already looking like last years beat-up old toys. It’s dated already. There are hundreds of examples of beautiful, modern, apartment buildings in the world, especially in D.C and Paris. Why do we, here in Denver have to put up with such mediocracy?

  11. Jim October 3, 2017 at 8:43 pm - Reply

    Can we have a contest to vote on the ugliest residential building in Denver? I think perhaps the standard to beat is The Beauvallon. This one is right up there. I am beginning to miss the parking lot that used to be here.

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