Rocky Mountain Land Use Institute


The Rocky Mountain West is characterized as much by its vibrant and diverse communities as by its sweeping plains and rugged mountains. The annual Western Places/Western Spaces conference explores the social and development issues facing communities—from large cities to small towns—as well as concerns about managing and preserving our natural heritage.

2019 Western Places/Western Spaces Conference
Designing for the Future: Building Enduring Value

Imagine your ideal community. What makes a place of enduring value? Does it preserve and appreciate its local history or is it a high-tech, future-oriented, master-planned development? Is it dense, urban, walkable, and transit-oriented or is it rural in nature, producing food, providing habitat, or protecting our natural heritage? Is it welcoming to all, regardless of income, ethnicity, ability, or age? Is it accessible, easy to navigate, and comfortable? Is it resilient and sustainable, able to cushion the impacts of climate change and reduce our impacts on the environment? And what is the role of art and beauty in creating places of enduring value? How important is it to create spaces that inspire awe, that promote civic engagement, that provide a respite, or that encourage recreation?  

As economic recovery has spread across the West, the demands of rapid growth threaten to undermine our ability to plan for and design places of lasting value. And yet, good design ensures that what we build works for the communities now and into the future. High quality design can transform a mundane block of apartments into a vibrant community; it can help revitalize a struggling Main Street; and it can promote sustainability by ensuring that our investments are durable.

For RMLUI’s 28th Western Places/Western Spaces conference, we looked at the ways in which the quality of design informs and shapes our communities. What works and what doesn’t? How are small towns using design to encourage growth and economic opportunities? How are cities ensuring that their focus on affordability doesn’t come at the expense of quality infrastructure? How are suburban areas re-designing spaces to meet changing market demands amid a retail revolution? How are regions using design to ensure that communities build on their diversity, leverage their collective resources, improve their connectivity, and preserve their natural assets? What design disasters should we learn from and avoid in the future? And what tools can we use to promote more thoughtful, more effective, and more beautiful design?

Check out the Program page for conference highlights and a link to the program.

Visit the 2019 Session Materials page to view handouts and presentations from the speakers.

Please contact us:
Phone: 303-871-6319

Sponsorship & Promotional Opportunities

Our conference is not possible without the generous support of our sponsors. These financial contributions help fund our programs and conference activities, including top-notch keynote speakers, plenary lunch events, and tours. Conference sponsorship provides visibility and underscores your company’s commitment to sustainable communities and informed and ethical land use and development practices.

Equally important are our Aspen sponsors, who provide in-kind marketing and promotional support.

For more information, please see our Sponsorship Platforms brochure or contact Susan Daggett.

Conference Materials

You can view and download materials from the 2019 conference sessions at the 2019 Session Materials link. For materials from past events, visit the Past Conferences page. The Program page includes conference highlights and a link to download the program.

You can also watch videos from the conference through our accredited Home Study program.

RMLUI’s Home Study

RMLUI’s Home Study courses provide an ideal option to maintain your professional credentials. Each block of videos presents a selection of panels from RMLUI’s Annual Land Use Conference and is accredited for CLE and AICP continuing education credits.

For more information about the sessions and registration information, please visit the Home Study web page.

The University of Denver Sturm College of Law is committed to providing facilities that are accessible to persons with and without disabilities. We encourage anyone who requires assistance to contact Lisa Loranger at or 303-871-6319 for further information.

Sturm College of Law
University of Denver
2255 E. Evans Avenue
Denver, CO 80208