Introduced in 1886 when the notion of a public park was considered a novel idea, City Park is one of Denver’s oldest gems. Sprawling over nearly 320 acres, the original design was inspired by Frederick Law Olmstead’s Central Park in New York, with looping carriageways, walking lanes and lakes with picturesque views across bucolic meadows. When the park first opened, it was a grassy, open plain without any trees. Denver school children started planting trees in the park each Arbor Day. By 1890, the park had 600 shade trees.
Today, City Park is embarking on a new chapter with the design and construction of a new golf course and clubhouse. Todd Schoeder, a renowned golf course architect, approached our firm to design the new clubhouse to complement the golf course he and Hale Irwin, PGA, Colorado’s most decorated professional golfer, were designing. With Saunders Construction as the design-build leader, the team won a public competition for the project.
After four years of design, construction and grow-in, the golf course and buildings are set to open in 2020. The new City Park Golf Clubhouse features a design that maximizes versatility and capitalizes on City Park’s vistas. From the building and its west-facing patio is one of the most panoramic views in Denver.
The $45 million, 136-acre project provides flood prevention and improved water quality in Park Hill. To resolve flooding issues in nearby neighborhoods while maintaining its original purpose, the team is delivering an updated golf course with a full driving range and four shorter holes for the “First Tee” program, a nonprofit that teaches core values and life skills through the game of golf to nearly 7,500 children annually. The project re-graded over 300,000 cubic yards of earth for storm- water detention, preserved over 250 trees and planted 750 new trees.