The former industrial district now commonly known as RiNo has a problematic lack of public spaces according to Chris Riedl, owner of Community First Commercial Real Estate.
“There’s no public realm in RiNo,” he said. “There’s not one public bench. There’s nowhere to go but a brewery or a retail establishment.”
So, with RiNo Art District, he plans on launching a pop-up park — “Boxyard Park” — in mid-July at the intersection of Broadway and Blake.
Riedl’s company has spearheaded the effort, but they have been bolstered by community support which he said has already allowed them to raise $70,000 toward their goal of $100,000.
He recruited the help of Davis Partnership Architects to design the park in a way that was fitting for this growing area of the city. The project will also feature Matthew Gines and his class at the University of Colorado Denver’s College of Architecture and Planning. The graduate students will be designing the park’s climbing wall and furniture. The RiNo Art District will handle the park’s programming during its six to eight-month lifespan, and Riedl said he hopes to choose a local artist to paint murals on the concrete and tables.
Last summer there was a temporary park on 21st Street, a few blocks away.
Denver City Council needs to approve the permit for the park’s plans to move forward, and after that, the park will remain open from the middle of the summer through November and during that time the area will be a considered a city park. After the pop-up’s contract ends, they will consider whether it will be a viable option to continue the project into 2019 and beyond.