Carry The Torch

Natalie Lord

On Wednesday, a group of our favorite preservation architects had a fantastic lunch with one of our icons, Dana Crawford. Dana is a force of nature here in Denver’s preservation community and it was truly such an honor to sit down with her and discuss her legacy.

One thing we knew before starting form+works was that we needed to gather as much input and advice from anyone willing to talk to us about their business experience. So you can probably start to imagine the excitement we felt being able to ask her how she did what she’s done and what advice she had for us.

On the top of her list is that it is now up to all of us to carry the torch. We discussed at length the dwindling of support around Colorado for historic preservation. It is likely due to such a long streak of success in saving some of our great buildings.  People walk down Larimer Square or into Union Station and revel in the beauty, but few people realize the DECADES of work it took Dana and her team to garner the necessary support and funding to make those projects happen. She spent years lobbying and pushing forward against, what was most times a huge wall of opposition.

She told us that despite how much we likely do not want a part of it, we need to get involved in the political side of the City in order to really keep the ball rolling.

We can’t rest on our laurels, we have to keep up the momentum – Dana

The task ahead of us feels almost too big sometimes. Even the dozens of preservation practitioners, architects, engineers, owners and enthusiasts combined don’t feel adequate enough to fight back against the huge tsunami of development our City is experiencing. But we all have to realize for Dana’s biggest successes, there were likely more than a handful of defeats. Yet despite those, she kept pushing forward. Therefore, so shall we.


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