The Denver Department of Community Planning and Development (CPD) is looking for a visionary Urban Designer to develop policy and practices that build upon our rich urban design history and further citywide goals of becoming a more inclusive, connected and healthy city in the future. Denver has grown from a small community that supplied provisions for the Rocky Mountain gold and silver miners to a national center of innovation, commerce and culture defined by resiliency and diversity in our residents. Our geographical context and strong and varied cultural heritages have aided in our great city’s successes, and the opportunities afforded to us. As we move into our future, Denver is shaping its continued growth and development with an eye toward transit and mobility, sustainability, energy conservation, and social equity, while recognizing the importance of urban design in addressing contemporary issues.
In CPD we are committed to cultivating a city of equity, diversity and inclusion and this commitment is woven into our daily work as we support the growth of Denver. Our residents are our customers and we aim to have employees who are as diverse as they are, we believe we are stronger and better public servants when we have different perspectives and unique ways of thinking.
The City Urban Designer will report directly to and work with the Executive Director of Community Planning and Development to:
Craft and implement a value statement that articulates Denver’s design identity from the citywide to the neighborhood scale and provide a level of consistency to projects throughout the city
Direct and guide quality design on city projects and development projects through the implementation of a regulatory design framework
Communicate the design story and future vision of Denver based on the histories and voices of the communities and goals of Blueprint Denver through civic conversations about the built environment
Establish partnerships with developers, non-profits, museums, universities to further Denver’s design conversation
Draw the intersection between equity, climate resiliency and design as mutually supportive goals in the public realm
Embrace smart growth and define a path that supports the goals of the 2019 Blueprint Denver land use and transportation plan and the city’s 2040 Comprehensive Plan
Elevate a design studio for the city which is collaborative and multi-disciplinary in process to impact the physical setting for life in Denver – buildings, historic resources, public realm, landscape, streets, and mobility
Denver has a rich urban design history dating back to Mayor Robert Speer. Out of his “Paris on the Platte” Vision, a series of parks and parkways were constructed that serve as an urban design framework for the city to this day. Denver has continued to build on this legacy with bold initiatives including the 16th Street Transit Mall and Denver International Airport. In the early 2000’s, Denver adopted a Form Based Zoning Code to influence future development beyond use. With the redevelopment of the National Western Stock Show, Denver is continuing its history of innovative urban design. Over the next decade, several large redevelopment projects including River Mile, Sun Valley, Loretto Heights and Stadium District will transform the present-day edges the central business district while preserving our historic structures and staying true to the Denver aesthetic. The time is now to harness the importance of urban design for the betterment of Denver.
We are looking for an expert in urban design who is a creative and innovative thinker that fully understands the intersection between design, equity and climate resiliency. You must be a design liaison who can tell a story through design and will work to find solutions with the diverse constituents of Denver as our city continues to grow and understands the importance of historic preservation as well as cultural significance of place. As this position interacts with people throughout the Denver community, we are always looking for someone who is bilingual. Please make sure to indicate any languages you are proficient in on the application.
The ideal candidate will:
Have a strong understanding of the key roles urban design principles and architectural quality play in city building
Have experience translating the urban design vision into a regulatory framework
Have knowledge of the local real estate market with emphasis on site development, zoning/planning approvals, design review processes, land use, building codes and permit requirements, and market trends
Have 10+ years’ experience in Urban Design
Have a master’s degree in architecture or urban design or related field
Have experience leading a design team to execute urban design projects, lead community outreach, developer negotiation
We realize your time is valuable so please do not apply if you do not have at least the following required minimum qualifications:
Education: Bachelor's Degree in Architecture, City Planning, Urban Design or directly related field.
Experience: Seven (7) years city planning or urban design experience with three years’ experience leading design projects.
Equivalency: Two (2) years of the appropriate type and level of experience may be substituted for each required year of post-high school education
Internal Number: R0035324
About City and County of Denver
Rising from the Great Plains at 5,280 feet above sea level, Denver is Colorado’s capital city. With 700,000 residents, the Mile High City sits at the center of a fast-growing, seven-county region boasting a population of more than three million. A hub for business development, innovation, higher learning, and progressive energy, the true heart of Denver lies in its diversity of people and neighborhoods. Its rich cultural landscape, seven professional sports teams, 5,000 acres of city parkland, and Rocky Mountain backdrop make Denver a nexus of urban sophistication and outdoor adventure. Mayor Michael B. Hancock and the employees of the City and County of Denver work to provide a safe, sustainable, and accessible place for every resident and visitor to live, work, and play.
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