Denver Crime Lab

Metals, Metal Composite Material, Wall Panels

“Unique” is the word that comes to mind when looking at the Denver Police Crime Lab project. All four sides of this elegant building have different designs and incorporate a double-helix motif, a nod to the DNA testing that takes place here. To create this unique look, Douglass Colony needed to implement some unique techniques.

Douglass Colony designed, fabricated and installed over 1,800 aluminum composite panels in 6 different colors (Castle Gray, Bone White, Vancouver Copper, Champagne Metallic, Pewter, and Deep Black) and Vaproshield SA moisture barrier behind all panels. Over half of the panels tied directly into the window glazing system. The metal composite materials selected for the project building address security concerns and longevity in design.

Gregg LaBerge, Director of the Forensics and Evidence Division and the Police Department states that, “The design of the building exterior was chosen to match other buildings in the Golden Triangle while incorporating subtle distinctions such as the DNA helix structure.”

Douglass Colony understands the value of having different experts working under one roof. It makes working together easier and more efficient. It allows for the implementation of complex designs like this one. Now the Denver police can enjoy these advantages with their forensic teams. The lab, previously located in a cramped 14,000 sq ft space on the 6th floor of the Denver Police Administration Building (PAB), is now expanded to house all nine forensic units under one roof in the innovative 60,000 sq ft laboratory. The close proximity of all nine forensic units improves operation communications, coordination and efficiency of all forensic work conducted.

The Denver Crime Laboratory incorporated many sustainable building practices that addressed energy savings, environmental stewardship, water efficiency, CO2 emissions, and improved indoor air quality. Construction and operations efforts included: diverting construction waste away from landfills, utilizing low-flow water fixtures and recycled content materials, and treating 100% of the storm water collected prior to entering the city storm water system. The Denver Police Crime Laboratory met Silver LEED Certification through the U.S. Green Building Council.

LaBerge also commented that, “Since moving into the new crime laboratory many staff members have commented on how great the building is to work in with improved lighting and air quality. This facility has transformed our working conditions and the impact was felt immediately by all.”

Year completed


Project Area

35’000 Sq Ft

Project Type


Materials used

4mm FR Core MCM

DCG 2300 Dry Joint Rainscreen System

Vapro Shield SA Moisture Barrier

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