Influential Architect And Urban Planner Ron Straka Helped Turn Denver Into ‘Great City’

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Denver mayor Federico Peña was elected in 1983 on the campaign slogan “Imagine a Great City.” But it was Ron Straka, his deputy director of urban design, who helped turn that phrase into reality. Straka championed downtown redevelopment and he pushed hard for Coors Field to be located in what was then a run-down stretch of warehouses just north of LoDo. Straka died Dec. 28, 2017, at 80.

Susan Barnes-Gelt, who was an assistant to Peña and later a Denver city council member, tells Colorado Matters about Straka's legacy.