2007 | Tucson, AZ | Higher Education | 33,650 sq ft new / 37,200 sq ft remodel | $12.2 million

The Northern edge of the University of Arizona’s campus is defined by Speedway Blvd, a six lane vehicular corridor.  This edge provides the college a strong visual connection to the Catalina Mountain range north of Tucson.  It also provides the school an opportunity to be “on-display” and celebrate the great work that is the essence of a creative college.  The building design is rooted in this idea of transparency – and how learning is nurtured by virtue of these connections.  The architecture celebrates exposed systems as teaching tools.  Fully glazed faculty offices express an ethic about sharing ideas as well as natural light and views.  Exterior glazed openings are positioned to carefully respond to solar orientation and provide views to distant vistas as well as immediate and intimate gardens.  Transparency is also evident in how the facility emphasizes the essential collaborative nature between the disciplines. The building and the landscape have a symbiotic relationship as building water is reclaimed and stored to sustain plant life. As time passes, yellow orchid vines will take over the entire southern face of the expansion, providing shade from the Arizona sun.

CAPLA also is very much a working laboratory for sustainable practices. An 11,000 sq.ft. interior/ exterior materials research lab affords students a diverse set of tools and opportunities for invention. The south side of the expansion is occupied by a water conservation landscape demonstration garden showcasing five different Arizona ecosystems.  Here, students and the public can learn about water conscious irrigation and native plants.  Water captured from the roof deck and HVAC condensate filters into a 12,000 gallon storage tank used for the garden’s irrigation system, resulting in an 87% reduction in potable water use.

 


Awards

2008

American Institute of Architects – Western Mountain Region
Merit Award

2007

“Best of Tucson” Tucson Weekly Newspaper
Best New Building

Publications

Newspapers:

2007

Arizona Daily Star, TUCSON REGION Section – April 29
UA buildings ditch red brick to symbolize, inspire, teach

Magazines:

2008

Architektur. Aktuell (Germany) – July – August

2008

ISH (Singapore) – July

2008

OFARCH (Italy) – September – October

Books:

2008

Integrated Design in Contemporary Architecture – Kiel Moe, Princeton Architectural Press