CU Denver Engineering Update #1

In April, we reported that the University of Colorado Denver had announced plans for a new building for the College of Engineering, Design and Computing on the Auraria Campus.

As mentioned in our initial post, funding for the building’s first phase was under consideration by the Colorado General Assembly during this year’s session, which ended in early May. Unfortunately, the new CU Denver Engineering building’s funding was not approved by the Legislature this session, which means design and construction will not be moving forward this year.

However, the project remains a key part the “Phase 1 (Years 0-5)” section of the CU Denver Facilities Master Plan (PDF), so it is likely the University will seek funding from the Legislature during its 2020 session.

Hopefully, this project will receive funding next year and can move forward with design and construction in the years that follow.

By |2019-06-15T20:30:19+00:00May 14, 2019|Categories: Auraria, Education, Infill, Renderings|Tags: |25 Comments


  1. Landon May 14, 2019 at 10:02 pm

    this building is really pretty and mirrors the historic church well.

  2. Rich May 15, 2019 at 9:42 am

    I mentioned this last time (and got called a NIMBY, which couldn’t be further from the truth), but do we know whether the sightline of the church down Arapahoe will be preserved? It’s one of the few terminating sightlines in Denver and I would like to see this preserved as a nod to Auraria’s past and present connection with downtown Denver. It’s especially disappointing if the engineering building does block the view because there is SO MUCH available space in Auraria. Just scoot the building over on this same plot of land and it wouldn’t be a problem. Gotta preserve those parking lot revenue generators though, much more important than history or urban beauty.

    • Jeffrey May 16, 2019 at 7:08 am

      Rich, I agree that sightlines need to be preserved. This is about architects and planners making plans that are conscientious of context. I don’t know, personally, if this building infringes on the church sightline — I hope it doesn’t.

    • J May 16, 2019 at 8:52 pm

      I’m not sure that it would block the sightline considering that the Arapahoe sightline is looking at the church from an angle.

  3. jmpmk2 May 15, 2019 at 10:10 am

    Nice to see the university leading the way on green roof implementation instead of making sorry excuses for failing to enact the will of voters like city council.

  4. Freddie May 18, 2019 at 9:52 pm

    There’s probably a better place I can put this comment, but, since we’re talking about Auraria…

    I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about Auraria lately. Now that Denver has grown up and become something much different than it was in the 70’s when the campus was created, and concern about auto-traffic and the sustainability of our city is becoming more urgent than ever among NIMBY and YIMBY alike, shouldn’t we be encouraging a change to the status quo of no student housing on campus? Why would we want tens of thousands of students commuting into Downtown Denver every day? Maybe it would make sense for a college campus at the edge of suburbia to be flanked by a sea of parking that fills with many thousands of cars every day, but it makes absolutely no sense in the middle of Downtown Denver.

    Am I missing something? I never hear a peep about it. Why isn’t this an issue or a cause?

    • Ken Schroeppel May 19, 2019 at 6:16 am

      Adding two residence halls is part of CU Denver’s Master Plan, both in the 0-5 year timeframe. I think there are a couple of others planned for other parts of the campus as well.

      • Philip May 19, 2019 at 10:38 am

        I was under the impression that housing within the campus boundaries was actually forbidden (by law?) owing to public grievance over the methods used for land acquisition. Did this change, or did I misunderstand the situation?

        • Ken Schroeppel May 19, 2019 at 3:23 pm

          My understanding is that it wasn’t a legal restriction.

        • Paul May 20, 2019 at 9:02 am

          CU doesn’t give a shit about honoring any old agreements regarding student housing or expanding the campus south of Colfax. They need resident halls to capture more of foreign/out of state students that path the bills with their exorbitant tuition rates at the quasi-private university.

          But if they want the engineering building done, perhaps they should put up and front the the money that’s intended to be raised in order to get general funds from the legislature. Though I would hope that CU would work with the campus partner institutions and AHEC to to first fund the much needed renovations of the King Center and Art Buildings first before pursuing more vapid trophy projects. But that would require cooperation, something that CU seems to have forgotten about.

          • Matthew May 23, 2019 at 8:02 am


      • Freddie May 19, 2019 at 7:12 pm

        Awesome! I had no idea.

        I downloaded a 158-page pdf that outlines the plan. Been randomly sifting through it here and there throughout the day. It’s pretty ambitious.

        The renderings of blocky building massings are fun to look at. The future campus should blend in with downtown much better than it currently does.

        Interestingly, some renderings include massings from DPAC’s “Next Stage” plan.

    • jmpmk2 May 19, 2019 at 12:04 pm

      CU’s plan to this point has been to exclusively lease a number of nearby buildings, which has been problematic for the general housing supply. Students are able to live close to campus at a subsidized rate, sure, but hundreds of residences are being taken offline that might otherwise be available downtown for affordable housing. I’d argue it’s also hurt area businesses who depend on the purchasing power of adult incomes. It would be in the interest of both the city and the university to invest in high density housing on campus.

  5. JMiller May 25, 2019 at 12:02 am

    If the colleges at Auraria want to keep with their expansionist ways and build-over previous green space, may I recommend tearing down the library? It’s footprint is large for what resides therein and can be replaced by something taller while perhaps giving back some green space (the open space courtyard is OK but could be so much more without being an enclosure).

  6. James June 3, 2019 at 12:57 pm

    Denver’s economy must be slowing down aloi.
    Because Denverinfill used to post more development projects in the past
    Update their Website every few days.
    Not like every three weeks
    Wish they would show more updates

    • Ken Schroeppel June 4, 2019 at 2:59 pm

      Nothing to do with the economy. I am overseas for six weeks and Ryan is very busy with other things. Sorry, remember, we do DenverInfill in our spare time and sometimes there isn’t any.

      • Dan June 7, 2019 at 7:56 am

        You guys do a fantastic job – but I too (a daily checker) and sadden by the lack of updates. Have fun overseas!

      • asdgasfdhsfd June 10, 2019 at 7:37 am

        I’m a constant checker too. Hoping to see more cool updates in the near future, but enjoy your summer in the meantime!

  7. James June 5, 2019 at 6:36 pm

    I apologize to you Ken.
    I didn’t know that.
    I really enjoy reading the Denverinfill website.
    Thank you Ken and your staff on the great work you all on the denverinfill.
    Its awesome.

    • Ken Schroeppel June 6, 2019 at 6:41 am

      No worries. We’d love to have a post a day but that’s the way it goes.

  8. Brian Repsher June 10, 2019 at 2:58 pm

    It is clear – the development boom in the downtown area is over!

    • Freddie June 13, 2019 at 11:16 pm

      Either you don’t live in Denver and don’t see the same forest of cranes that I do every day, or this is a passive-aggressive taunt.

      Ken is a top-notch writer, (and Ryan certainly ain’t too shabby either). Quite frankly what we’re getting here (even though it may be a bit sporadic at times) is high-quality journalism coming from the best source of knowledge we could hope for pertaining to the topic of development in Denver – and we don’t pay a damn dime for it. Calm down.

      • Freddie June 13, 2019 at 11:21 pm

        (Not to mention Ryan’s photography skills.)

  9. Brian Repsher June 13, 2019 at 1:07 pm

    Yes indeed it seems that Denver downtown is now in a bust development phase – exciting while it lasted. -it has been at least a month since anything was announced.

    • Ken Schroeppel June 15, 2019 at 2:31 am

      There is plenty going on, but Ryan and I are both unavailable to post. Sorry.

Comments are closed.