Lower Downtown Design Review Commission

Overview

The function of the Lower Downtown Design Review Commission is to preserve, enhance, and perpetuate structures that have architectural, historical, geographic or cultural significance within the Lower Downtown Historic District.  

Agenda items for consideration can include the following:

  • Recommendations to City Council on the contributing (or historic) status of structures within the district
  • Design review for new construction, alterations, signs and demolitions
  • Adoption of design guidelines, policies and procedures related to historic preservation within the district

General Meeting Information

  • Time and date: Lower Downtown Design Review Commission meetings are held the 1st Thursday of every month at 8:30 a.m.
  • Location: Meetings are held in Room 4.F.6 of the Webb Municipal Building (201 West Colfax Ave) with virtual options via Zoom for applicants and members of the public.
  • Virtual access: Members of the public may participate virtually via Zoom. Meeting links and call-in information is posted for every meeting. 
  • Language interpretation: If you would like to request that live interpretation is provided at the workshop, please email CPDOperations@denvergov.org at least five business days before the meeting. 
  • Accessibility: If you need disability-related accommodations, including sign language interpretation or real-time captioning via CART, please contact CPDOperations@denvergov.org at least three business days before the meeting.

 

See info for June 6th Meeting  

Information for Presenters

Submission and Staff Review

Design review applications, and other applications for board consideration, are due 3 weeks and 2 days (23 days) prior to the first Thursday meeting. Once a project is submitted, Landmark Preservation staff works with the applicant to ensure that the project meets the design guidelines, the materials are complete and to write a staff report and create a presentation for LDDRC members that includes a recommendation of approval, approval with conditions, or denial for the project. 

To make meeting length more manageable and create greater predictability for commission members and applicants, agendas are capped at a certain number of projects. Projects are added to the agendas on a first come first served basis. If more than 2 infill projects or more than 5 projects total are submitted in a given month, the commission will hold an overflow meeting on the second Thursday of the month. If 4 infill projects or 10 projects total are submitted in a given month, additional projects are scheduled for the following month. 

Helpful Downloads

 

 

 

Design Review Guidelines

The Lower Downtown Design Review Commissions conducts design review for the Lower Downtown Historic District, using the following design guidelines.

Members

Commission is made up of nine members who are appointed by the mayor, serve three-year terms and receive no compensation. Members must include the following:

  • Real estate developer with experience in rehabilitation of commercial/residential projects similar in scale to buildings in the district
  • Practicing architect
  • Historic preservationist
  • Preservation architect
  • Resident of the district
  • Property owner in the district
  • Owner or operator of a business in the district

Andy Duckett-Emke - Vice-Chair

  • Historic preservationist
  • Term expires 5/1/2026

Andy Duckett-Emke is a licensed architect and associate at CSHQA.  He has over twenty years of work experience after completing his Masters Degree in Architecture at Washington University in St. Louis and the University of Technology, Helsinki.  Andy served 2 terms on Denver’s Landmark Preservation Commission and is currently serving on Denver’s Lower Downtown Design Review Commission.  Andy’s professional work includes the rehabilitation of stone and cast iron lighthouse within the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, rehabilitation of the log and timber Many Glacier Hotel,  the stone and brick Pitkin County Courthouse and the wood framed Elkhorn Tavern in the Pea Ridge National Military Park.   

 

Fred Glick

  • Property owner in the district
  • Term expires 5/1/2025

Fred Glick is a commercial real estate developer working primarily on adaptive reuse projects in Denver’s urban core and is Vice-Chair of the Denver Planning Board.  He is also an active community volunteer and currently serves on the boards of RedLine Contemporary Art Center, Denver Civic Ventures and Clayton United RNO.  He also serves on the Downtown Denver Partnership’s Mobility Council and Urban Exploration Planning Committee.  Fred chaired the board of the Academy of Urban Learning, a Denver charter school serving unhoused and at-risk students.  He led the Learning Spaces Committee at Denver Shared Spaces, was a member of the Mile High Connects Advisory Council and helped establish the Aurora Welcome Center, serving immigrants and refugees.

A Denver native, Fred spent twenty years abroad in Swaziland, South Africa, India, Egypt and the United Kingdom.  He holds a BFA from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts and a masters from the University of Colorado Denver’s Urban and Regional Planning program.

James Graebner

  • Resident of the district
  • Term expires 5/1/2025

Jim Graebner was born in western Pennsylvania in a town without a stop light. He received his undergraduate degree from Valparaiso University and a graduate degree from Case Western Reserve University.  He first came to Denver when he was assigned to manage the study which led to the city buying the Denver Tramway.  He became RTD’s fourth employee and spent 4 1/2 years there before becoming the general manager of the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority. This was followed by 8 years as CEO of the San Jose Transit system, quintupling ridership and building the light rail line. A three-year stint in Canada gave him the courage to return to Denver where he started his own consulting firm, which has kept him busy for the past nearly 35 years. He moved to LoDo in 1994 and has watched it change and grow into a model for the mixed-use urban community that it has become.

John McIntyre

  • At Large
  • Term expires 5/1/2027

John McIntyre, ANZIA, Principal at Tryba Architects has 21 years of experience in award-winning, international design. He has provided design leadership for cultural and academic institutions, master plans, adaptive reuse, corporate and mixed-use developments in Denver, New York, London, Toronto and New Zealand. John specializes in adaptive reuse and the repositioning of existing buildings and has significant experience working within historic urban environments. He has a deep understanding of sustainable design principles, contextual design and the importance of the sensitive integration of contemporary architecture with the existing building fabric to provide both continuity with the past and relevance for the future.

Aimee Sanborn

  • Preservation Architect
  • Term expires 5/1/2026

 

Craig Lawrence

  • Business Owner in the district
  • Term expires 5/1/2026

As Principal and Partner at Rowland+Broughton Architecture / Urban Design / Interior Design Craig has a wide range of experience in new construction, renovation, and preservation projects along the Front Range, the Rocky Mountain region, and beyond.  Craig and R+B are dedicated to the success and health of LoDo and its diverse and inspiring community and have maintained a thriving design studio on Blake Street for over a decade.

 

 

Heather Vasquez Johnson - Chair

  • Practicing Architect
  • Term ends 5/1/2025

Nick Allen

  • Real Estate Developer
  • Term Expires 4/4/2027

Nick Allen is a commercial real estate development project manager and a licensed architect in Colorado.  In his 14 years as a built-environment professional, he has designed and managed a variety of projects, including commercial office, multi-family, healthcare, and higher education. 

Nick is a born and raised in Colorado and has lived and worked in Denver since 2010.  He obtained his Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Kansas, and later a Master’s of Real Estate and the Built Environment from the University of Denver.  Outside of the office, he is actively involved in the mentorship of students and young professionals and is passionate about enjoying all the entertainment and recreational opportunities that Colorado has to offer.