History Colorado Center

Denver, Colorado

Completion

2012

Client

State of Colorado, Colorado Historical Society

Size

189,000 SF

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Scope of Work

Architect of Record, Interior Design, Master Planning, Entitlements

The History Colorado Center replaces and expands the 1977 museum, housing a new museum, educational and public programs, Office of Archaeology and Historic Preservation, State Historical Fund, Stephen H. Hart Research Library, and all functions of the Colorado Historical Society. A beacon for a new southern gateway to the historic Civic Center District, the Center engages the public, visitors and employees in the active life of Denver’s cultural district and the exploration of 15-million historic artifacts.

The main entrance sets back from the sidewalk atop broad stone stairs, framed by a board-formed concrete lintel and weathered steel portal, conveying a ceremonial entrance. The program is wrapped around a vast 4-story atrium, the Great Hall, which opens to the south, allowing sunlight to fill the space. An expansive fourth-story balcony offers views of Colorado’s Front Range and Denver’s distinguished cultural buildings. Natural light and interior materials connect Colorado’s geology to its history.

A Hub for Civic Engagement

The Center serves as a new destination in Denver’s Cultural Center dedicated to learning—a thought-provoking space for civic conversation and an environment that encourages an inspirational journey into the future by interpreting the past.

The scale, mass and fenestration of the half-block structure deliberately engage with the site’s physical and historic context, civic purpose and neighboring urban districts: Civic Center, Golden Triangle, Uptown Capitol Hill and the Central Business District.

 

State of the Art Archival Storage

15,000 square feet of compact, high-density mobile shelving streamlines and consolidates the Museum collection and archives, providing 90% storage efficiency. Over 15 million individual items including more than 200,000 artifacts, over 750,000 photographs and over 8,000 linear feet of manuscripts are stored with precise temperature and humidity controls.

Explore Colorado’s rich Western history