A Different Kind of Valley
Denver Police Traffic Operations and Firing Range
AIA Denver Citation Award
LEED Gold Building
Sandwiched between the elevated 20th Street off-ramp from I-25 and a future light rail bridge, just north of a dusty train yard and south of a highway maintenance shed, the site for the Traffic Operations Facility was replete with challenges. The collection of scattered concrete facades, security fencing, and industrial silhouettes informed an exciting new corner for the City’s Police Operations and, in the process, became a regional law enforcement resource.
Programmatic challenges included the need for flexible-use space and an innovative firing range training facility. The initial design challenges associated with the site were resolved by separating the primary programmatic components, placing the firing range portion of the facility in a building of its own.
Traditional thinking might suggest that this raw, rough-edged district was without inspiration for meaningful civic discourse. The design team took this challenge to heart, embracing this somewhat forgotten place beneath a highway, beside a creek, and below the Central Business District. Determined to celebrate the City’s commitment to improve quality of service through infrastructure renewal, the team interjected vivid new design elements with crisp, bold colors. The site is now acknowledged as more than an industrial edge, it signals a new point of reference and entrance into Lower Downtown.