04 Jun
Santa Fe Drive Arts Santa Fe Drive Arts

Reclaiming Art and Culture in a Denver Parking Lot

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Turn a parking lot into classroom space? In an urban area? There's either some good learning happening, or a decline in the value of city parking.

In this case, it's more the former than the latter. A group called Architecture for Humanity -- Denver (AHD) just wrapped up a successful Kickstarter campaign on behalf of the Museo de las Americas, located in the Santa Fe Drive arts neighborhood of Colorado's capital city. Having raised slightly more than its $20,000 goal, the group plans to use the cash to re-purpose old materials for the parking lot classroom. This will enable the Museo to hold their art education camp for children in need. 

AHD says that the new space can still be used for parking, or for other community purposes. Their design for the classroom will add a new fence and gate, as well as a new parking surface. Not to mention an overhead canopy to provide much-needed shade on those scorching summer days.

The Santa Fe Drive arts area of Denver is home to a large number of Latino-centered organizations, including museums and at least one educational assistance organization. On the Kickstarter page, AHD notes that "...over 29,000 students in Denver do NOT have access to art education programs at all. In addition, 85% of the disadvantaged youth in Denver are Latino and the dropout rate for Latino youth has reached a staggering 37%."

The Museo's summer camp is intended to foster self-esteem and to encourage further understanding of Latino culture. A suitable space was needed, though, as there's not enough room indoors.

Now, 20 more kids will be able to attend the workshop than originally planned.

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Read 5861 times Last modified on Tuesday, 04 June 2013 07:03
Jim Lillie

Jim began writing for newspapers and designing for publishing companies at a time when both industries were just beginning to make the switch from manual to digital platforms. Jim lives in Boulder, Colorado with his teenage son.

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