16th Street Mall Design Concepts
16th Street Mall Partners Share 16th Street Mall Design Concepts
The Downtown Denver Partnership and Downtown Denver Business Improvement District joined 16th Street Mall Partner organizations, including the City and County of Denver and the Regional Transportation District (RTD), to share proposed design concepts for improvements to the 16th Street Mall — including the alignment of the transit lanes and general location of the trees, lights, and gathering and pedestrian space — as part of a federal environmental process to design the Mall’s future.
Additional details are included in the announcement below. Project partners will identify a preferred alternative later this fall following further analysis and input from the public. The community is invited to provide feedback on the design concepts and other aspects of the Mall at one of two upcoming Open House sessions:
16th Street Mall Open Houses
Wednesday, October 18 from 12 to 1 p.m. or 5 to 6 p.m.
RTD, 1600 Blake St., Denver (Basement Board Room)
The 16th Street Mall is one of our city’s most vital connectors and important public spaces, and stewarding its successful future is a key priority for the Downtown Denver Partnership and BID. Click here to read additional background about the Partnership and BID’s role in the 16th Street Mall and this process.
Today, the City and County of Denver and the Regional Transportation District (RTD) shared proposed design concepts for improvements to the 16th Street Mall — including the alignment of the transit lanes and general location of the trees, lights, and gathering and pedestrian space — as part of a federal environmental process to design the Mall’s future. More design concepts may be evaluated based on public input. Project partners will identify a preferred alternative later this fall following further analysis and input from the public; this is one step in a broad effort to rethink and potentially redesign the 16th Street Mall — one of the city’s most vital connectors and important public spaces.
The 35-year old Mall has aging infrastructure and rising maintenance costs, while seeing increasing numbers of transit users and pedestrians. This phase of Mall design is the first part of a federal process as outlined by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The NEPA effort is led by the city and RTD, in partnership with the Downtown Denver Partnership, the Downtown Denver Business Improvement District, the Denver Urban Renewal Authority (DURA) and the Federal Transit Administration. The NEPA process is expected to wrap up in June 2018. Final design planning will continue after NEPA is complete, if the “No Build” option is not selected.
Proposed Design Concepts (see images below or view at denvergov.org/themallexperience):
- Median Asymmetrical – Reconstruct aging Mall infrastructure, with a similar alignment: a median between bus lanes, and some blocks where pedestrian areas are asymmetrical.
- Center – Reconstruct Mall for buses to run directly down the center, with no median and with symmetrical pedestrian areas for the length of the Mall.
- Center Asymmetrical – Reconstruct Mall for buses to run directly down the center on some blocks, with no median, and some blocks with asymmetrical pedestrian areas.
- No Build — No change to the Mall — only continued infrastructure maintenance.
Different alignments offer different user experiences and other factors to consider. Analysis of the design concepts will consider: improvements to deteriorating infrastructure; pedestrian and vehicular safety; space for walking, gathering places and outdoor café seating; adaptability for special events; ability to add underground utilities for technology upgrades (fiber, electric, etc.); how to honor the iconic design of the Mall; mobility and reliability of the Free MallRide buses; water runoff and more.
Input So Far
Previous studies have helped Mall partners identify the need for long-term changes to the Mall’s infrastructure to enhance its role as a vibrant and active public space. The NEPA process began in June and has included stakeholder workshops, public open houses and feedback booths at Meet in the Street events. All these inputs contributed to the proposed design concepts on the table today, and will contribute to additional design considerations for the Mall in the coming months.
Additional Public Input Opportunities
Open Houses: You can learn more and provide feedback on the design concepts at a 16th Street Mall open house. You may also provide feedback on other aspects of the mall including trees, safety, urban design features, historic design and aesthetics.
16th Street Mall Open Houses
October 18, 2017
Noon – 1 p.m. or 5 – 6 p.m.
RTD, 1600 Blake Street, Denver
Online: View the alternatives, learn more and provide your feedback at denvergov.org/themallexperience.