Research and Creative Work

In the College of Architecture and Planning at the University of Colorado Denver, students and faculty engage directly with our vibrant city, dynamic community, and magnificent landscape by working on real projects that make a real difference. 

Community-Based Narrative Story Maps of the Lost Auraria Neighborhood

Date: 11/1/2021
Principal Researchers: Brian Page

Unit: Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences 

Project Abstract: This research addresses the relationship of CU Denver to its urban renewal roots.  The goal of this place-based project is to acknowledge, document, and commemorate what was removed and those who were displaced in the early 1970s to make way for the Auraria campus.  The project uses digital methods to develop and disseminate new information about the lost Auraria neighborhood.  Over the past several years, we created a robust historical GIS for the original Auraria district – an area of more than one and a half square miles -- featuring six high-resolution georeferenced digitized map layers and six high-resolution georeferenced digitized aerial photographic layers.  This project uses these GIS layers to generate prototype narrative story maps that combine a) digital visualizations of the old neighborhood, and b) digital stories based upon the experiences of people who once lived and worked in the district.  The research is being conducted in consultation with our community partner, the Auraria Historical Advocacy Council (AHAC).  The ultimate aim of the research is to use the prototype story maps as the basis of multi-year external grant proposals to the State Historical Fund at History Colorado and the National Endowment of the Humanities (NEH) Digital Humanities Advancement Grants program.

brian-page-editedBrian Page Bio: I am Brian Page and I have a PhD in Geography from UC Berkeley.  I am an Associate Professor in the Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences at CU Denver, where I have been on the faculty since 1992.  I specialize in research on the historical development of urban places from a political-economic perspective using archival methods, visual methods, field study, and geospatial science.  Regionally, I have active interests in both the United States and China.  Specific research topics include urban landscape history, digital landscape reconstruction, urban renewal and redevelopment, gentrification, social displacement, historic preservation, and the relationship of cities to the natural environmental.  My research has been supported by the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, the National Science Foundation, the Newberry Library, History Colorado, and the University of Colorado Denver. 

Photo Credit:  Liza Lagman Sperl

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