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sustainable architecture
design strategies + innovative technologies that promote a sustainable built environment
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Modern Minimalism: Rammed Earth House by Brent Kendle

Modern Minimalism: Rammed Earth House by Brent Kendle | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The feel of this modest single story hillside home is evocative of the mid-century modern homes which once dominated the surrounding area. Humble, natural materials such as rammed earth walls, limestone floors and Douglass Fir wood ceilings are woven inside and out in a sophisticated play of interlocking interior and exterior living spaces.

The scale of the home is decidedly “cozy” and visually calm with a minimalist approach to materials and detailing, allowing the focus to be on art and nature, meeting the owners goal of creating a home of simple sophisticated elegance without being boastful.

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Phoenix Observation Tower by Bjarke Ingels Group

Phoenix Observation Tower by Bjarke Ingels Group | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Located in downtown Phoenix, the 70,000 sf Observation Tower shall add a significant structure to the Phoenix skyline from which to enjoy the city’s spectacular views of the surrounding mountain ranges and dramatic sunsets. Phoenix-based developer Novawest, commissioned the team to create a destination event to provide tourists and citizens of Phoenix alike the chance to enjoy the unique features of the Valley of the Sun.

The future observation tower is conceived as a tall core of reinforced concrete with an open-air spiral sphere at its top, resembling a metaphorical pin firmly marking a location on a map.
Walking downwards from the top through a continuous spiral promenade, the visitors of the observation tower experience all of the building’s programs in a constant motion, while enjoying dynamic 360 degree views of the city of Phoenix and the Arizonian landscape.  
 
The base of the tower will serve as a public plaza offering shade, water features and a small amount of retail together with a subterranean queuing area. The tower will serve as a working model of sustainable energy practices, incorporating a blend of solar and other technologies.

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A Sustainable Campus: Central Arizona College by SmithGroup

A Sustainable Campus: Central Arizona College by SmithGroup | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

This new campus aims to create a unique and authentic identity for the growing Central Arizona College in the higher education marketplace while creating a highly sustainable prototype.


Masterplanned for significant growth in the next twenty years, three buildings and a central plant represent an initial phase that will create a campus design language for future development to follow.

Conceptually rooted in its historic agricultural roots and Native American legacy, the structures are conceived as a series of honest ‘academic sheds.’ Deep overhangs let interior academic spaces flow outdoors seamlessly. Corten steel and rammed earth create the primary exterior language eliminating the need for long term maintenance. Structural steel and galvanized acoustical decking create the main interior volumes, while continuous north facing clerestory glazing harvests daylight, coupled with numerous large ‘daylight scoops.'

Read more about this project at ArchDaily.com.

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Extreme Peacefulness: The Modern Jarson Residence in Arizona

Extreme Peacefulness: The Modern Jarson Residence in Arizona | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Jarson Residence is a secluded 4,440 square foot contemporary home designed by Phoenix-base studio will bruder+PARTNERS and located in Paradise Valley, Arizona, USA. The owners- two real estate professionals interested in modern architecture and their two sons- wanted a home that would answer their need for peacefulness. Weathered steel and copper contribute to the mysterious look of the building, well integrated in its environment. Here is more from the architects regarding its structure: “Entry, office and bedrooms, are on the upper level with the primary living and dining experience, a media / music chamber and potter’s studio tucked beneath. Cork and concrete floors, wall planes of translucent glass, and cabinets of cherry and stainless steel articulate the interiors. The upper level entry and passage are conceived as galleries for the owners’ art collection. The stair down to the collective living spaces plays against the subtle drama of the angled south façade, to draw you to the desert beyond where the double height living room takes you to the sky.”

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