Design Platform

Design Platform: Jonas DiCaprio

By Dana R. Butler

Design Platform put a modern addition on this traditional brick home. Photo courtesy David Lauer Photography


Jonas DiCaprio’s parents were residential developers, builders and real estate agents in Minneapolis, who designed and built custom homes during the mid 1970s through the early 1990s. “I grew up on construction sites,” he says. “I witnessed my parents’ ups and downs with the real estate and construction markets and thought, I definitely don’t want to be in construction.” Getting a degree in architecture in Boston led to summer internships on the historic island of Nantucket. “It taught me a lot about preservation and restoration,” he says, “which I have taken into my firm, Design Platform.”


DiCaprio’s firm is a full service design–build company. “We do both residential and commercial projects in Colorado as well as nationwide,” he says. “We have a diverse group of architects, builders, and craftsmen/women on our team.” The focus is on modern architecture and construction, which he defines broadly as working to make the design reflect the time in which it was built and respecting the elements of the building or the neighborhood that already exist.


The 1950 midcentury modern ranch project in Montclair involved the restoration of the original 1950's structure - including retaining the original brick inside and out - and a large, modern addition. Photo courtesy David Lauer Photography


The firm takes a client-centered approach to every project, defining and prioritizing needs before any design work begins. “We strive follow that line between meeting those priorities, staying within the defined scope and budget and delivering a unique and creative finished product,” says DiCaprio. “We do that through a combination of preservation, restoration, renovation and, in some projects, addition—when it comes to the residential work.”


Photo Courtesy David Lauer Photography


This contrast of new and old is apparent in a number of recent projects, including a late 1800s Highlands Victorian for which the original brick structure was maintained and a very modern interior created. “We also recently renovated a back house to a property that had originally been a blacksmith shop from the early 1900s,” DiCaprio says, “The building had been untouched, and we created a very warm and unique Airbnb rental that has an interior you would never expect if you approached this building down the alley.”


This addition made for more storage and a casual dining area in addition to a seating area around a fireplace. Photo courtesy David Lauer Photography


Another example is the CubaCuba Restaurant expansion in the Golden Triangle. “Our addition abuts two of the oldest homes in Denver,” says DiCaprio. “Caroline Wilding, our lead architect, worked very hard to design an addition that was in scale with the surrounding structures and honored those original historic homes by keeping our distance from them.”


Photo Courtesy David Lauer Photography


Jonas DiCaprio

Design Platform

3310 Brighton Blvd