Designed by the architecture firm Studio Gang, the Populus, in Denver (Colorado), will be the first hotel in the U.S.A. not only carbon neutral, but carbon positive. Its exterior – as well as its name taken from the scientific name of the aspen tree, Populus tremuloides – will be inspired by the trees that are traditionally associated with the West of United States.
“The distinctive shape of the windows is informed by the growth process of aspen trees, which are so emblematic of Colorado’s ecology. As the trees grow taller, they leave behind dark, eye-shaped marks on their trunks as they shed their lower branches. The pattern of the windows works with the rhythm and texture of the façade – each vertical scallop is the width of a single hotel room – to give the building its dynamic and welcoming appearance”, said Jeanne Gang, Studio Gang’s founder, MacArthur Fellow and one of Time magazine’s top 100 most influential people.
The eco-conscious design of the building foresees also a commitment to plant trees equivalent to over 5,000 acres of forest, offsetting a carbon footprint of nearly 500,000 gallons of gas emissions and removing additional carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. The 265-room hotel will include a rooftop bar and restaurant with a panoramic view of the mountains and the city skyline, along with retail and event spaces. It is set to open in late 2023.