New CSU campus in Denver fully under construction, will open in 2022

The Colorado State University campus in Denver is one step closer to opening in 2022.

Today, the CSU System breaks ground on Hydro — the final of three buildings at its CSU Spur campus that is being constructed as part of the future National Western Center, just northeast of the intersection of I-25 and I-70 in Denver.

The CSU Spur Terra building, focused on food and agriculture, broke ground in September. Vida, the building focused on animal and human health, broke ground in May.

The CSU Spur campus will be the first of its kind in the nation — an urban, public-facing campus focused on global challenges, that deploys the resources, programs, and research of diverse partners and an entire university System: CSU, CSU Pueblo, and CSU Global.

Programs within Hydro build upon CSU’s long-held expertise in water, and contribute to the overall campus mission of convening partners and experts for the public good. CSU Spur will be a place where doors are open to all learners and education is accessible, said CSU System Chancellor Tony Frank.

“The entire Spur campus is designed to inspire current and future generations to dig into learning around food, water, and health — issues paramount to our livelihood and quality of life,” Frank said.

The Hydro building at CSU Spur showcases an important partnership with Denver Water, as it brings its new and expanded water quality lab to the site, magnifying Denver Water’s importance as a leader in water quality expertise in Colorado and the West.

“This puts our laboratory right in the heart of a new research environment, in a spot where our water quality experts can work far more closely and readily with academics and other innovators,” said Denver Water CEO/Manager Jim Lochhead. “The new Spur campus will help Denver Water explore and implement leading solutions to water challenges for our customers and the state — not just for urban water solutions, but also agricultural production and watershed health.”

The CSU Spur campus buildings (Hydro, Terra, and Vida) add up to nearly 300,000 square feet of space, much of which is focused on unique learning experiences, and will take experiential learning to the max; visitors can take part in the action by watching scientists in labs, veterinarians in surgery, artists in-studio — and by exploring interactive exhibits throughout all three buildings.

CSU Spur will also be a place for professionals and community members to convene, collaborate, or simply relax with free WiFi and a cup of coffee. Outside, the public will find interactive art, open natural areas, access to a restored section of the South Platte River, and connection to the rest of the future 250-acre National Western Center, a year-round experiential site.

“We’re grateful for the partnership with Denver Water that’s allowing this third Spur building to come to life,” Frank said. “And we’re looking forward to opening the doors to this entire new campus in 2022 to showcase the innovation, creativity, and fun of our three higher education institutions — CSU, CSU Pueblo, and CSU Global — to people of all ages,” Frank said.

About CSU Spur

In 2022, the CSU System will open CSU Spur, where innovative ideas and unforgettable experiences come to life at the National Western Center. CSU Spur’s three buildings at the center of the landmark project in north Denver will ignite and fuel new ideas around water, food and health and their impact on our lives and our world. Spur is where learning is open and accessible to all. Where researchers tackle the world’s most pressing problems around water, food and health. Where art and culture challenge and surround you. Where rural and urban, local and global intersect. Learn more at

About Denver Water

Denver Water proudly serves high-quality water and promotes its efficient use to 1.5 million people in the city of Denver and many surrounding suburbs. Established in 1918, the utility is a public agency funded by water rates, new tap fees and the sale of hydropower, not taxes. It is Colorado’s oldest and largest water utility. Subscribe to TAP to hydrate your mind, and follow us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

About the National Western Center

The National Western Center is a year-round, global destination for ag and food innovation, western heritage and culture that will open in Denver in 2024. We will convene the world at the National Western Center and at to lead, inspire, create, educate and entertain in pursuit of global food solutions.