Interview: Cul-de-sac communes

Published March 2010 Vol. 14 Issue 3

by Tim Covi

Since the beginning of 2009 a new term, the cul-de-sac commune, has created an almost monthly buzz in Internet chat rooms, newsrooms and forums. Even without investigating much further, it’s easy to see why. It’s a combination of dipolar things. The cul-de-sac is the quiet compound of the suburban soccer mom. You think of easy Sunday mornings where the only sounds are a few finches and the gurgled zip of a freshly oiled bike chain as a neighborhood kid peddles by.

The commune, by contrast, is the cluster of stilted structures slapped up like a Tim Burton daydream on a remote desert horizon. It’s full of poorly washed hippies with radical ideas about free love, or at the very least, visions of utopia.

But for Stephanie Smith, the ideas of a commune and a suburban cul-de-sac don’t have to be at odds. They can even be right at home together in a Denver suburb.

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Art Feature: Lens on the city

Published March 2010 Vol. 14 Issue 3

text by Tim Covi
photots by Zoriah Miller

When it comes to growth and design, Denver seems to be at the cutting edge of new models of development, embracing terms of the times like “new urbanism,” “sustainable” and “green.” Communities like Lowry, Landmark, Stapleton and Belmar have spotted the landscape on the outer ring of the city over the past 8 years, and newer re-developments like the Gates Rubber Plant project and the planned build out behind Union Station are under way within the shadow of downtown.

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Local Buzz: Jazz & Gentry

Published March 2010 Vol. 14 Issue 3

Will Denver Have its own Harlem Renaissance?

written by Tim Covi
reporting by Dwayne Pride
photography by Adrian Diubaldo

Standing at the corner of Welton and Washington Streets, if you look hard enough you might still see throngs of people coiling around the sides of the Rossonian Hotel. Young men standing under tipped fedoras and women in cocktail dresses and heels lined up to hear some of the best jazz the country has to offer. You’d have to look hard, mind you. Past the dusty, lightly sootsoiled brick, past the 1993 renovations, around the light rail that sidles up to the hotel’s flank and comes to a slow, furtive stop at the traffic light before rushing off down Welton with its payload. You’d need to look beyond the empty shell being remodeled, well into history. Because for several years, this corner has been a husk of what it was.

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