Wazee WireWorks is a carefully designed and engineered to fit neatly into its 75’ x 75’ site between three historic structures -- all of which are over 100 years old. Situated in Denver’s Lower Downtown Historic District, it was designed to comply with the strict guidelines of the Department of the Interior Standards for Rehabilitation of Historic Buildings. The addition addresses the historic context into which it is placed by harmonizing with its surroundings and yet it still makes the clear statement that this is a modern building.

The design team of BlueSky Studio (as architects) and Monroe + Newell, Inc. (as Structural Engineers) met the challenges of tucking a building into a tight site bounded on three sides by historic buildings of load bearing masonry. Existing building foundations had to be extended while maintaining occupancy. The new structural system was designed to cantilever 12 feet to another building to avoid differential settlement.

Another unique issue was dealing with Denver Building Code requirements. The existing building onto which the addition was constructed was a load bearing masonry and wood structure, which is common throughout the warehouse district. The addition met all requirements of current building codes and was built as a totally separate structure that continued to provide openings and shared exit systems. The design team worked closely with the general contractor to deliver a building of extraordinary complexity in budget. Value Engineering resulted in savings to the client of over one million dollars (20% reduction in budget from original estimates). BlueSky’s architect received the highest compliment given by a contractor, having produced: “... one of the best sets of drawings we have ever seen.”



WAZEE WIREWORKS 1441 Wazee Street Denver, Colorado

17 Residential Lofts / Ground Floor Retail /
Historic Renovation / Addition-1998
54,000 SF
Cost: $6 million