The 16th Street Mall is one of Denver's top tourist attractions — but do the endless souvenir shops, panhandlers and petitioners encourage tourists to come back? To explore ideas and opportunities for enlivening the mall, the Downtown Denver Partnership and Downtown Denver Business Improvement District will host the 2016 Prototyping Festival on July 23 and July 24. And they're inviting you to come up with some of those prototypes.
The festival — on the mall, of course — is part of the Mall Experience, an ongoing collaboration with the City and County of Denver and the Regional Transportation District to explore options for the space. “The 16th Street Mall is one of our most vital public spaces, and we are focused on ensuring its future as an authentic, self-sustaining place that is supported by the entire community,” says John Desmond, executive vice president of downtown environment for the Downtown Denver Partnership. “We encourage the entire community, including artists, designers, entrepreneurs and all those interested in ensuring the vibrancy of the Mall, to submit their ideas for installations that can transform the visitor experience Downtown.”
The application process will be open from now through May 15; winners will be notified by June 1 and given a $2,500 stipend to create their concept, which will be showcased during the final weekend of Meet in the Street, which returns for five consecutive weekends this summer, starting June 25. The application and additional details are available at downtowndenver.com.
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Want to know more about the Prototyping Festival, Meet in the Street and other plans in the works for downtown, including the Next Stage (a re-visioning of the Denver Performing Arts Complex) and the Outdoor Downtown? The Partnership will co-host an informational session from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 5 at the Commons on Champa (1245 Champa Street).