For many years, this block, like much of Highland, was a sleepy enclave. But then the area started getting hot. Spencer moved to the mountains and sold his house to neighbors who promised to keep it. They didn't. They flipped it to a developer, who wanted to build a giant duplex on the property -- which necessitated getting Spencer's house delisted as a historic landmark, so that it could be scraped. The Denver Landmark Preservation Commission didn't approve the duplex project -- it would have been too intrusive in that historic neighborhood, the commission determined. But it did okay delisting the bungalow.And the commission also approved the plans of the next owners of the property, for a single-family house -- a very large single-family house. And so they scraped the bungalow, the oldest house in a historic neighborhood, and proceeded to build their dream home. It's a stunner, all right, and for its smart, contemporary use of the space deserves the Mayor's Design Award it won last night. But it's also stunning for what it's done to the neighborhood -- blocking the view of the historic area that people used to see as they headed to Highland, and blocking the view from some of those houses altogether.
Then again, the house has given Denver a new look... a view not of the past, but of where this city is going.
Watch our Show and Tell blog for photos of all the other winners.
More from our Calhoun: Wake-Up Call archive: "Travel + Leisure says Denver is tops in microbrews, at the bottom in diversity."