rendering of the entrance to the new North Building welcome center

Elevate Denver Bonds Boost the DAM’s North Building Project

With its international reputation as a leader in innovative education and exhibition programs, the Denver Art Museum’s commitment to public access and community collaboration is well known. In 2012 the museum began planning to make a major investment to better serve our expanding community by renovating one of the city’s architectural icons—the nearly 50-year-old North Building.

After years of quiet fundraising efforts, in December 2016 the museum publicly announced its project plans and launched site preparation for its $150 million North Building project in late 2017, following the successful passage of the City of Denver’s General Obligation Bond package. Now referred to as Elevate Denver, the package of voter-approved infrastructure investments will elevate neighborhoods across the city.

Thanks to Denver voters, the approved cultural bond package greenlighted funding to support projects including construction improvements for Denver Botanic Gardens and Denver Museum of Nature and Science, as well as $35.5 million to make safety upgrades and address aging infrastructure of the Denver Art Museum’s North Building.

When work is completed, the building will have new plumbing, electrical, insulation, and tech infrastructure, as well as a new welcome center and events space. Finally, exterior upgrades will expand outdoor programming options and increase safety for the 200,000 students who visit the museum for free each year, thanks to the museum’s Free for Kids program.

Current work visible on the site in the third quarter of 2018 includes drilling caissons to support the new welcome center as well as the beginnings of an elevator core that will bring visitors from the main level to a new community event space.

Overall, Elevate Denver bonds will support infrastructure improvements across the city over the next 10 years. For more information on the City of Denver bond program and improvements coming to your neighborhood, visit www.denvergov.org/elevatedenver. For updates on the DAM’s North Building project, visit denverartmuseum.org/north.

Kristy Bassuener is the director of communication and public affairs at the Denver Art Museum.

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