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Palmer Center

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1991, Klipp Colussy Jenks DuBois; master plan, Kohn Pedersen Fox. Cascade Ave. between Colorado and Pikes Peak aves.

This $85 million high-rise hub of Colorado Springs, a collaboration of Denver and New York architects, is the latest attempt to enhance the original site of the splendid old Antlers Hotel (demolished in 1963), whose twin towers once framed Pikes Peak.

The new Antlers Doubletree Hotel is flanked by sixteen-story towers joined to the hotel by two-story wings that define a central entrance court framed on Cascade Avenue by an elevated pergola. The design-integrated Norwest Bank Tower, on the south end, is reminiscent of the Deco Gothic skyscraper style. This richly detailed Post-modern edifice wears an acid-etched precast concrete skin resembling limestone with traditional stonelike detailing and granite accents. A triple cornice steps up to a hip-roofed penthouse. The lobby's coved and domed ceilings, granite and marble accents, and multi-colored granite floor are reminiscent of the elegant Antlers Hotel.

On the north end, an identical base is used to incorporate the sixteen-story Holly Sugar Building, the centerpiece of the 1960s complex on this site, with its thin, vertical bands of stone and glass jutting skyward. Across the street from the underground parking entrance on Pikes Peak Avenue, the poly-chrome stag's head in the terracotta parapet of the Antlers Garage recalls another era.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Thomas J. Noel

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