The other day Rachel and I bussed then biked from Boulder to Denver.
Tons of traffic, congestion, development, ancient prairies getting replaced by effing big box stores. Consumption! But: we arrived at Union Station, the old beautiful train terminal that’s been redeveloped, preserving best of old beautiful elegant architecture while adding modern design (see photos below, more on @waylonlewis on Instagram). It’s amazing, inspiring. I stopped by my friends at The Kitchen Next Door, though they weren’t open yet, and then we ran into a politician friend and…were reminded that development can be mindful and inspiring and community-focused, too.
We then biked into a chaotic, ugly, disused neighborhood that’s being woken up to community, bicycling, walking, it’s becoming family-friendly and safe. We arrived at our destination, The Source, an eco development in a former manufacturing warehouse. It’s beautiful and full of craftspeople, artisans, makers. We still make things, in America. I then interviewed the developer, Kyle, who with his father has helped turn many such disused spaces into vibrant markets, homes, communities. I also talked with his wife, Andra, the editor-in-chief of Eater Denver, about the real food scene, the inspiring community that is Denver—one of the hottest cities in the world in terms of arts, community, nightlife, food. Here’s our discussion. Our video discussion is below, it’s beautifully edited by Rachel Nussbauminator though the sound is…loud (we couldn’t edit out the noise of my brain).
Is it possible to improve neighborhoods without tipping them into gentrification? How can development and business be good for people and planet, instead of bad for both? How can we balance work and family?
Five Fundamental Elements to a Vibrant Community:
Waylon talks with Kyle and Andra Zeppelin about the five fundamental elements to a vibrant, fun, eco-responsible and accessible community.
Great Urban Markets around the world, and why they’re important to enlightened society and vibrant communities:
Waylon, and Kyle and Andra Zeppelin discuss the great Urban Markets in the world—from Milwaukee to Barcelona to London to Seattle—and why a common gathering area matters to your hometown.
Gentrification vs. Mindful Development:
Waylon Lewis talks with Kyle and Andra Zeppelin—the leading mindful power couple in the hottest city in the US—on developing safe, economically and culturally vibrant, accessible communities without allowing them to slip into gentrification.
Power couple? Mindful development?
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Editor: Rachel Nussbaum
Photos: Waylon Lewis