Tour Populus, Architect Jeanne Gang’s First Colorado High-Rise


Populus Building by Architect Jeanne Gang

Architect Jeanne Gang’s designs have been called daring, visionary and neighborhood-regenerating, but when describing her first Colorado project that takes shape at the intersection of Colfax Avenue, 14th Street and Court Place, the best term may be “city-defining.”

Called Populus, in honor of the aspen tree (Populus tremuloides) that inspired its design, the structure’s unique fenestration evokes the eye-like patterns on an aspen’s trunk. “On the exterior, the ‘lids’ of each window stretch outward according to solar orientation to shade the interior, improving the building’s energy performance,” says Jon Buerge, chief development officer at Denver-based Urban Villages, the firm behind the project. “The windows change in size in response to how an [interior] space is used, mirroring the growth patterns of aspens.”

The 13-story mixed-use building—slated for completion in 2023—will include a 250-key hotel, 40 micro-apartments, event spaces, multiple food and beverage offerings, and a rooftop bar and view deck. It’s a building “that is worthy of Denver’s rising prominence on the national and international stage,” Buerge says, and “an impressive architectural legacy for generations to come.”