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Downtown Skyline


College of Architecture and Planning

This is an excellent place to study for all kinds of reasons.


The University of Colorado Denver is part of the Auraria Campus, home to one fifth of all higher education students in Colorado. The campus is shared by CU Denver, Community College of Denver, and Metropolitan State University of Denver, which means we have access to tri-institutional entities with greater resources, such as the library, health center, PE events center, bookstore, early learning center, GLBT student services office, and performing arts facility.  

Location in Downtown Denver

Our newly renovated building is located across Cherry Creek near the heart of campus. We are situated in Denver’s lower downtown [LoDo], a historic district of brick buildings filled with apartments, vibrant shops, restaurants, bars and galleries. 

Close to professional communities

Since many of their offices are nearby, it is convenient for professional designers and planners to participate in our program, bringing relevant professional experience directly into our design studios and seminar classes. These professional firms and agencies provide opportunities for internships and employment.

Attentive to planning and design

Denver benefits from a legacy of civic investment and progressive planning, and is seen as a national model for innovation in contemporary planning and design.  Some of the biggest national and international names in the field, including Michael Graves, Daniel Libeskind, I.M. Pei, Philip Johnson, David Adjaye and Brad Cloepfil, have designed important buildings for the city. Gio Ponti’s only building in North America is the Denver Art Museum.

Urban Center

Denver is a metroplex of 2.6 million people. It is the largest urban center in a 500-mile radius, and serves as the cultural, intellectual and economic capital of the expansive Rocky Mountain region. Denver was ranked #1 in U.S. News and World Report's Real Estate section's "Top 20 Best Places to Live in the U.S." in 2016. Added bonus: Colorado ranked #9 on Kiplinger's list of states with the hottest job markets​ in 2016.

The Rocky Mountains

Denver sits at the eastern edge of the Rocky Mountains, one of the most spectacular natural settings in the world. The mountains provide valuable natural and strategic resources, and abundant recreational amenities including some of the world’s top ski resorts. The Rockies also present interesting challenges for designers and planners working in this region, who have to manage continued population growth while protecting the fragile eco-system.

Recreation and Health

The Cherry Creek recreation trail connects to almost 850 miles of paved bike paths throughout the metro area. It has the largest city park system in the United States; including the Denver Mountain Parks its total park acreage would cover Manhattan Island in New York. Denver was ranked #7 on the American Fitness Institute's list​ of healthiest metro areas in 2017 and #4 on the list of Best Cities for Staying Young in the RealAge 2014 Youngest & Oldest Cities Report

Culture and Arts

Denver's cultural scene includes the Denver Performing Arts Complex, International Film Festival,  and buildings by noted architects housing the Denver Art Museum, Clyfford Still Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art and History Colorado Center. In addition, there are specialty museums celebrating nature and science, outdoor arts, children, transportation, air and space, miniatures, dolls and toys, and the Black American West Museum and Museo de las Americas. Nearby Red Rocks Amphitheatre is a favorite venue for musicians and fans. 

Easy transportation

Denver is one of the first cities in the United States to launch a European-style bike-sharing program with 80+ automated stations around town. Many students ride to school, or use the “Eco-pass” on the bus and light-rail network with its stations a few blocks away.

Among Top 10 “Coolest” Cities

Forbes magazine ranked Denver as the 10th-coolest city in the U.S. in 2017, citing Denver for its youth, coffee shops and beer breweries.​ Kiplinger’s Personal Finance picked Denver as one of its Top 10 coolest cities for young professionals for its nightlife, light rail, Wi-Fi access, and the Rocky Mountains. Kiplinger's also ranked Denver #5 in the list of Best Cities for New College Grads in 2014.

Denver is home to professional teams the Denver Broncos, Colorado Avalanche, Colorado Rockies, Denver Nuggets and the Colorado Rapids.

Sustainable Policies

The City and County of Denver again in 2012 ranked #4 out of 54 of the nation’s largest cities for its sustainable policies, programs and activities by the national sustainability advocacy group Our Green Cities.


According to the 2015 Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index​, Colorado is the fourth happiest state in the nation. The ranking is based on data in five categories: Purpose (liking what you do each day and being motivated to achieve your goals), social relationships, financial security, community (liking where you live, feeling safe and having pride in your community) and physical health.

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