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—Photograph by Sean Hagwell

The Space Between

Downtown’s alleys get ready for a makeover.

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In Denver’s exceedingly fierce real estate market, it’s not surprising that every square foot of ground is being scrutinized for new uses—including downtown’s alleys, historically relegated to dumpster storage. Not anymore, thanks to events like Rialto Cafe’s four-year-old Brewer’s Alley (pictured), which features samples from local brewers. The party became so popular, in fact, that Rialto’s alley, on 16th Street between Curtis and Champa streets, is hosting two editions this year: The first was in May, the second is in September. The Dairy Block, a development near Coors Field set to open in 2017, plans to use its alley as a pedestrian-only lane with storefronts, as does the nearby Market Street Station development, debuting in 2018. In short, the future of urban retail looks to be right up Denver’s alleys.

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