In the latest example of adaptive reuse, a Denver hotel was converted to apartments. This Denver Post article explains how Turntable Studios, near the Highland neighborhood a mile from downtown, hopes to attract young professionals who value low cost and great location. The studios offer 335 square feet of living space and rent is about half of what you’d pay for a two-bedroom nearby.

Hotel conversions are an exciting idea. A typical hotel room is already set up like a small house, with a full bathroom and an open space for living and sleeping. That means a hotel conversion probably costs less than (say) a factory conversion, using fewer new materials and generating less waste. Developers can pass these savings on to the folks who live there by offering some of the most affordable rents around.

Exterior of the new hotel-turned-microhousing. (Photo by Kathryn Scott Osler/The Denver Post)"
Exterior of Turntable Studios, the new hotel-turned-microhousing. (Photo by Kathryn Scott Osler/The Denver Post)

In practice there are mechanical requirements that do require the contractors to open up the walls: you’ll need to add hookups for a kitchen, and reroute utilities like electric and hot water so they’re metered individually. Still, reusing an existing structure makes much more sense than tearing down and building from scratch. The converted Turntable Studios, with its enlarged windows and kinetic-art multicolored shades, is a neat improvement to the booming Denver skyline.

Thanks to Brett Silverstein.


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