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Community in Focus: Hampden East III

HOAs come in many shapes and sizes. CAP Management is responsible for the management of a variety of styles, from townhomes with a few units to sprawling single-family detached associations, and everything in between. Of all the various HOAs that we manage, mid-rise and high-rise buildings are some of our favorites. Really, it is that dense, tower-like structure, and they diverse populace they tend to house, that screams ‘urbanity!’ The Hampden East III Association is one such HOA.

Located about a block from the intersection of South Tamarac Drive and East Hampden Avenue, in a district known as Tamarac Square, (really just steps away from our Shadow Wood HOA), Hampden East III commands the attention of motorists and pedestrians alike. Comprised of two towers, the HOA, in conjunction with two neighboring buildings of about equal height, creates a skyline in this part of town, anchoring its own district of the city in many ways. That neighboring property – Brookdale Tamarac Square, a senior living community – used to be part of the same development as our HOA, it is said. The only difference to the casual observer today is a difference in the color of the painted trim. Visual differences aside, this cluster of density in a part of town in which development is more spread out creates a district which, alongside all of the others like it, helps to make Denver a city of unique neighborhoods which may be identified by the ‘mini-skylines’ which they are centered upon. For a better understanding, consider the effect the clusters of high-rise buildings along Cheesman Park, at the Denver Tech Center, and near Glendale have on the character of Denver as a whole. They really give the city a cosmopolitan feel, with the center of activity being downtown amongst the skyscrapers, and more diversified activity throughout the city in pockets identified by skyward landmarks of their own.

Unlike the new, shiny, glass-clad towers which continue to rise in central Denver, Hampden East III is very much a relic of Denver’s past. 1961, the year in which the association was completed, was a time when its neighborhood was a destination of its own. Tamarac Square is still the name many choose to use in reference to the neighborhood, though its profile has greatly changed over the years. In its heyday, Tamarac Square was home to a thriving two-level mall of the same name. When the mall was torn down in 2011, its retail space was 90-percent vacant. The commercial property was redeveloped shortly thereafter. Today it is anchored by a Target store and numerous other businesses and is almost fully leased. While the old shops and restaurants which are missed by some are now part of south Denver’s history, the current occupants of the retail space serve a contemporary audience, one which caters to a diverse population. Hampden East III is home to folks of many backgrounds and ethnicities, and in combination with the redeveloped Tamarac Square, truly makes the satellite district an invaluable piece of an increasingly more cosmopolitan Mile High City.