The heart of downtown Denver is about to showcase a summer of local history through exhibits, programs, and events at the History Colorado Center. Building Denver: Visions of the Capital, a fascinating exhibition of architecture, ambition, activism and urban planning, Opening on Saturday, May 29th, in the safe and spacious History Colorado Museum on the corner of 12th Avenue and Broadway.

On view from May 29, 2021 to August 31, 2022 in the Denver building Explores the growth, urban development, and architecture of Denver from 1860 to the present day. Spanning 3,000 square feet of interactive space, the exhibit shows how citizens, designers, and residents have continuously worked to bring their own visions for Denver to life. It’s built on that five chronological sections These focus on different visions for the capital – including the future – and residents are encouraged to stand up for their ideas for tomorrow. In each section, the exhibition examines how design influences everyday life.

You can see an original light pole from the 16th Street Mall by IM Pei and a partial reconstruction of an Auraria deckhouse from 1859, which was saved from demolition in 1939 by May Bonfils Stanton and is considered one of the oldest surviving structures in Denver. Drawings by John R. Henderson, Jr., who was Colorado’s first licensed black architect, will also be among the artifacts on display. Visitors can listen to the poems written in the Lively Denver Podcast and have the opportunity to share their own neighborhood memories in the exhibition. Denver buildingThe fascinating sections are “A New City, 1860-1900,” which begins with the Colorado Gold Rush. “A Beautiful City, 1900-1940” unpacking a movement embracing Mayor Robert Speer; “A Contested City, 1940-1980” about a struggle between urban renewal and historical preservation, among other competing visions; “A Great City, 1980-2020” examining Mayor Federico Peña’s optimistic view of Denver’s fate; and “A Resilient City: The Future of Denver,” which enables visitors to ask questions about pressing issues such as mobility, the environment and housing in today’s city.

Marked by climate change, public health crises and the burning pursuit of greater justice in our metropolis, Denver is in the midst of accelerating urban and social change. The population has exploded over the past two decades, and while the city is more diverse than ever, it has also been identified in a recent study to be one of the fastest growing cities in the nation. How did we get to this point? Where are we exactly? And where should we go from here? Denver building and its supportive facets will help answer some of these questions.

Photo courtesy History Colorado