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Carla Madison Recreation Center

UPDATE as of November 21: 
Due to construction delays associated with technical and mechanical issues, the new Carla Madison Recreation Center is now scheduled to open January 2018. The construction close-out process will occur in the month of December, at which point, staff will begin to furnish and equip the facility.  We appreciate the level of community support throughout the process and are excited that we will be able open a center that incorporates the priorities identified by the community for the new state-of-the-art recreation center. Once an opening date is confirmed we will publish to this page and social media platforms. 


The new recreation center is scheduled to be completed in January 2018 and will include:

  • Lap pool
  • Leisure pool
  • Weight area
  • Cardio area
  • Fitness and multi-purpose rooms
  • And more!

Read original project press release | Read the groundbreaking press release

Project details

Ground broke on the Central Denver Recreation Center (CDRC) on November 2, 2015. Construction will continue through fall 2017

Site construction will include on-site parking, a dog park and the conversion of the east lane of Josephine to a parking lane from Colfax to 16th Avenue.

View fenced-off construction site

Auto Lane Closures

View lane closure map

Sidewalk and Auto Lane Closure

Duration: June 1, 2016 – end of project (fall 2017)
Section impacted: Sidewalk on the east side of Josephine and east auto lane of Josephine between Colfax and 16th Ave. 
Description: Per project plans, the east traffic lane will be converted into a parking lane

Utility Notifications

No utility interruptions scheduled at this time

Denver Parks & Recreation is committed to limiting inconveniences to the public as much as possible. The community's cooperation with project crews during this process is greatly appreciated!


•  Denver recreation center needs assessment conducted

•  Denver recreation center needs assessment results presented

•  Denver voters passed the Better Denver Bond program in which $11 million dollars
    was appropriated for planning, design and land acquisition (not construction)

•  Site selection study completed

•  Land Acquisition: Church in the City parcel acquired (2.6 acres)
•  Land Acquisition: negotiations to purchase “Sun Mart” stalled (0.3 acres)
•  Public Meeting: September 15  |  Site Selection Process - Presentation

•  Land Acquisition: negotiations with “Sun Mart” restarted
•  Public Meeting: June 27  |  Community Update - Presentation

•  Press Briefing: January 13 (Mayor Hancock announces the project plan)
•  Public Meeting: March 5  | Recreation Center Trends - Presentation
•  Public Survey: April 1 - Ongoing (facility features and services)  |  Take the Survey
•  Public Meeting: June 3 |  Survey Results and Public Input - Presentation


  • Public Meeting: May 6 | Design Narrative - Presentation
  • Public Notice: May 18 | Naming Eligibility
  • Naming petitions due: August 18
  • Naming Petition Presentations to PRAB: September 10
  • Dog park closure: October 26
  • Groundbreaking: November 2015


  • December: Topping Out Ceremony


  • January: Center opens to the public
  • April: Fenced off-leash dog park opens to the public



Public meetings are a great way to understand many aspects of the process of this project, in addition to staying up to date as we continue moving forward. These meetings are open to everyone and we strongly encourage and welcome your attendance. Any upcoming meetings will be listed on our Community Relations page

Review the list of public meetings and presentations and/or notes for each.

Share your Ideas through our CDRC Email!

In addition to public meetings, we offer another avenue to continue open communication throughout this process. If you have ideas, comments, concerns or additional feedback you would like to share, just send us an email at A Denver Parks & Recreation staff member will respond to you if requested, or ensure to share your comments with our project management team. 


Public Hearing: Amendment to Parkway Building Line Restrictions Policy
Date: Thursday, November 12

The CDRC site is a complex site that is working to accommodate a multitude of requirements. There is complex code regulations that required Colfax activation via minimum building frontage and glazing; primary and secondary street build-to line requirements; and parking requirements. By amending a small portion of the parkway setback from 35’ to 25’ on the Central Denver Recreation Center (CDRC) property, DPR will have the ability to balance many needs and create an attractive, safe, active and compatible place within the heart of Denver.  The proposed retail space would complement the new recreation center, provide the required Colfax activation, and would fund an indoor running/walking track, an amenity that was highly requested by the public.

View setback modification FAQs

Diagram of proposed changes

The programming report summarizes the initial planning and programming progress on the CDRC project from March 2014 to September 2014, including results of the programming survey, 3 stakeholder meetings and 2 public meetings.

Ballard & King Programming Report

May 20, 2015 
Project Summary and Design Narrative

August 26, 2015
City Council Committee Presentation 

October 22, 2015
Stakeholder committee meeting- project update presentation

March 8, 2016
Stakeholder committee meeting - project update presentation

Stakeholders for the Central Denver Recreation Center serve as a sounding board throughout the process of the project. Each member was appointed by a Registered Neighborhood Organization (RNO) within a two-mile radius of the new recreation center site. The stakeholder committe is comprised of representatives from the Bluebird Business District, the Colfax Business Improvement District, Denver Public Schools, real estate and development professionals in the surrounding neighborhood, along with Councilwoman Jeanne Robb and Councilman Albus Brooks.