Denver Federal Center – Denver Ordnance Plant Building #1-A/Denver Federal Center Building #53

AddressBounded by Center Ave. to the N., Bdg. 50 and Main Ave. to the S., Fifth St. to the E., and Sixth St. to the W., within the Denver Federal Center, Lakewood 80225
QuadFort Logan, 1965 (1994)
SectionS9, T4S, R69W
SourceHistoric Building Inventory #5JF1048.10, Colorado Historical Society.
Initialdate1998-12-08 00:00:00-07
Latestdate2012-11-28 00:00:00-07
HistoryDesigned by the architectural firm Smith, Hinchman, & Grylis of Detroit, Michigan, this 226,175 sq. ft. steel frame building with brick and concrete block walls was built for the U.S. Army by Broderick & Gordon in 1941. During World War II the structure housed the manufacture of .30 caliber ammunition and heavy artillery fuze. This was one of the five main manufacturing buildings associated with the Denver Ordnance Plant. Originally the building had the appearance of an assemblage of rectangles with brick walls which contained large expanses of steel sash windows. The west elevation of the building was a predominately two-story facade, with two large clerestory, or monitor sections, and a series of ventilator pipes piercing an otherwise unobstructed roof. On the east elevation the exterior of the first story was dominated by a loading dock and bays which were serviced by railroad tracks. The core of the interior of the structure was originally a large open expanse which served the manufacturing process. A mezzanine level above the main floor looked down on the main floor. The first major interior renovations to the building began during the mid-to-late 1940s to accommodate the Bureau of Reclamation's Engineering Center. During this time, space was partitioned to create offices.