Dairy Center to get a facelift

Gift from Western Disposal fuels an expansion

| Aug 3, 2010

Architect’s rendition of a new look for The Dairy Center
The Dairy Center for the Arts announced that Western Disposal will donate $300,000 over the next three years to fund a new entry for The Dairy’s historic building at 26th and Walnut streets. Dan Souders, founder of Western Disposal, and Gary Horton, president, announced the gift Tuesday, Aug. 3, as part of the company’s 40th anniversary celebrations.

Western Disposal joins the Boulder-based Boedecker Foundation as a major donor to The Dairy Center for the Arts. Last November The Boedecker Foundation announced it would fund an art house cinema theater that is expected to be completed late this year.

Western Disposal is a local family-owned trash collection business that started with one truck, about the same time that The Dairy’s building began its life as a milk processing center for Watts-Hardy Dairy. Western now has 120 employees, more than 70 vehicles and 35,000 residential and commercial customers.

The Future of The Dairy is a major renovation that will complete the repurposing of the 42,000-square-foot facility, a nationally recognized model for adaptive reuse of an abandoned industrial space. A dramatic new façade will enclose a large portion of the out side patio, adding a safe and convenient entrance along with programming and gallery space. A flowing curved roof covers a transparent glass atrium and dramatically enhances the solid, block forms of the existing building.

The larger lobby provides additional programmable space, allowing simultaneous access to separate events and added display space using movable walls and partitions. The Dairy’s success has dramatically increased audiences, classes and performances. Crowds routinely pack the main lobby and other venues.

In addition to the new cinema, The Dairy includes black-box theaters of 80 and 100 seats, a 250-seat performance space and multiple galleries. The cinema, at the south end of the building in a space that formerly housed CATV, will offer a high-quality experience for arts-related cinema programming including films and documentaries, broadcasts of operas and live theater, with state of the art acoustics. It can accommodate live performances or speakers as well.