Building Index – Building 349
200 N. Rampart Way
Denver, CO 80230
[GPS N39°43.315 x W104°53.970]
“Not the Ambassador Hotel of Los Angeles, but the home of the 21st Air Base Group of Lowry Field is the gigantic Army barracks pictured above. Twenty-one different organizations are housed there at present, and complete facilities are provided in the building for some 1,800 enlisted men. Adequate day-rooms are furnished the squadrons, and in addition a library, bowling alley, barber shops, tailor shop, and portrait studio are available to the soldiers. Mess No. 1, a modern up-to-date kitchen, is part of the building providing a serviceable convenience to enlisted men.” [Source: “The Lowry Field Rev-Meter, 29 May 1942, Pg. 14)
For more than five decades, the monumental Brick Barracks Building has served as an important component of a major training facility established by the US Army Air Corps in 1937. Originally referred to as the Denver Branch of the Air Corps Technical School (ACTS), the facility was renamed Lowry Field in 1938 and then Lowry Air Force Base in 1948. Completed late in 1940, the Brick Barracks Building’s function has evolved along with the changing mission of this once vital military base.
Additional entertainment was made available to members of the military in 1941 when the Post Exchange installed a 4-lane bowling alley in the basement of the Brick Barracks!
For its final role, in 1961 the Brick Barracks Building shifted to a new and important use. On July 7 of that year, the Lowry Technical Training Center’s Headquarters was moved from the deteriorating large Mission-style former Phipps Sanatorium building (which was later demolished) into the newer Brick Barracks. For this reason, the building is commonly known in the Denver area today as the Headquarters Building, rather than as the Brick Barracks. The final 33 years of Lowry Technical Training Center’s operations were marked by numerous changes in mission, including the training of airmen for the Vietnam War, training of personnel for maintenance of high-tech military equipment, the housing and retraining of airmen convicted by court-martial of non-violent infractions of military law, the installation and operation of Titan missile silos on the former bombing range in 1962, and aerospace and intelligence instruction through the 1990s. With air traffic becoming a hazard to area residents, flying activity was terminated at the base in 1966 due to its envelopment by growing Denver and Aurora. The Brick Barracks continued to serve as the Headquarters of the Lowry Technical Training Center until final closure of the base occurred in 1994. [Source: Extract; National Register of Historic Places]