Tag Archives: architecture

Post Office, WEB

Adaptive reuse of Phoenix post office wins architecture award

Post Office 2Holly Street Studio Architects’ Diane Jacob’s infusion of Arizona State University’s 30KSF student center at a historic United States federal building in downtown Phoenix recently won a Crescordia award for historic preservation. Caliente Construction handled construction of the project.

Since the center’s opening in early 2013, students, faculty and the community at large have used the space for a multitude of purposes.

Adaptive reuse of the large-scale, centrally located structure revolves around four key ideas: open up to provide scenic views out and light in; embrace history through the structures expressed and skylights; engage the city with the park and align with existing patterns; and address the student with flexible and dynamic spaces for multiple endeavors.

The building’s mechanical, plumbing and electrical systems were modernized and tied to Phoenix’s NRG Energy Center, an energy-efficient and environmentally sound district energy and power plant serving major downtown structures. New clean-energy boilers eliminate electrical reheat systems, cutting building energy loads drastically and opening up additional usable square footage within the building.

The combination of a contemporary design within a well-worn masonry building begins a dialogue that is critical for environmental awareness in desert cities – creating greater awareness and inspiration for rethinking the way we inhabit our urban desert environment.

Westlake Reed Leskosky promotes two employees

Westlake Reed Leskosky promotes the following individuals in recognition of their design and technical excellence and superior execution that enhance the firm’s fully integrated design services and thought leadership:

Peter W. Rutti, AIA
Peter is Principal, Director of Design and Phoenix Studio Director of Westlake Reed Leskosky.

WRL_RUTTI_PETER 4x4He advances the Phoenix design studio culture and portfolio by fostering collaboration within the design team and creating inspiring design solutions. Over the last decade he has led and coordinated design teams for some of the most complex high profile performing arts centers in the United States. Peter understands how to build cultural arts facilities, what makes them resonate with their audiences and how they can contribute to the economic development of their communities.

Peter’s recent work includes the design of the renovation and expansion of the Avalon Theater of Grand Junction, Colorado, transforming the 1923 historic Vaudeville playhouse into a vibrant multi-venue regional center for the arts as a new anchor for downtown redevelopment and social engagement. Peter’s experience designing buildings that help to revitalize and activate their surroundings has become a significant approach to the Phoenix studio’s focus and work. He is also leading the design of a new performing arts school on the campus of the University of Mary-Hardin Baylor in Belton, Texas, as well as designing cultural arts projects in Beijing and Shanghai.

Peter extends his commitment to design excellence through his involvement in the progressive development of the architectural community. He is an Adjunct Professor at the Arizona State University Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts where he teaches a graduate level Comprehensive Design Studio focused on the design of performance and cultural centers. Peter is also a visiting critic at the UCLA School of Architecture & Urban Design and College of Architecture + Planning + Landscape Architecture at the University of Arizona.

A board member of the Arizona Citizens for the Arts and a member of the American Institute of Architects, Peter received his Master of Architecture from the University of California LA in 2001 and his Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Arizona in 1995.

David M. Combs, AIA
David Combs is Associate Principal and Project Director of the Phoenix Studio of Westlake Reed Leskosky.

2014 David Combs 4x4David applies his diverse professional experience spanning the entire spectrum of the design and construction industry, and ensures design and technical excellence for complex projects. His current work includes a cultural arts project in Gabon, Africa, and healthcare facilities for the Veterans Administration, Arizona and California.

David’s focus includes LEED certified and sustainable medical research facilities for premier clients in both the public and private sectors. He also contributes his experience in multiple building types including restoration and adaptive reuse facilities. As a project director, David has successfully taken projects from schematic design to completion while maintaining a successful working relationship with clients, contractors, and consultants. David received his Bachelor of Architecture and Bachelor of Environmental Science from Ball State University in 2003.

Phx Financial Ctr 41_W.A. Sarmiento

Shepley Bulfinch’s architecture office heads to Phoenix Financial Center

Shepley Bulfinch is growing its way to a new home this summer when its moves into the south Rotunda at the landmark Phoenix Financial Center.

For the past five years, the Phoenix architecture office has called The Link, its studio at 1st and McDowell, home. When they started to outgrow the space last year, they knew they were looking for something more than square footage.  With its distinctive inverted concrete arches and domed roof, the south Rotunda could not have been a better fit for this design-centered practice.

The opportunity to call this mid-century landmark home was irresistible, according to principal Joe Herzog.  “This building will be 50 years old this year. I think there’s some amazing symmetry with us as an architecture firm that’s reintroducing ourselves to the community with this move,” he said.

The design of the interior renovation is now underway, with a move-in date this summer. In the meantime, Shepley Bulfinch is setting the stage for Modern Phoenix week by hosting the Reinvent Phoenix community design workshop in the Rotunda space starting tonight.

“Phoenix Financial Center represents not just a time period for America, but a really important time period in the development of Phoenix,” said Herzog. “I think this can be one of those landmarks that really pushes the edge of what downtown really is.”

The Phoenix Financial Center, comprising the South Tower and two rotundas, was designed by Peruvian-born architect in W.A. Sarmiento and opened in 1964.

SS Reendering

SkySong sparks economic revitalization along McDowell Road Corridor

No one would guessed that a catalyst of innovation could rise from the ruins of a vacant shopping mall. And certainly no one could imagine that happening in the middle of a crippling economic downturn that affected the entire world.

But that’s what’s happened in Scottsdale.

“It is hard to think of a business attraction initiative the city has recently used that has not mentioned SkySong as a major attribute,” said Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane. “SkySong has a national reputation and as it grows it will continue to elevate Scottsdale’s standing.”

SkySong, the ASU Scottsdale Innovation Center, opened in 2007 at the location that was once the Los Arcos Mall and has become one of the biggest success stories in the world when it comes to incubator and technology centers.

The vision for SkySong is to create a mixed-use project of 1.2 million square feet that will draw entrepreneurs and innovators into the project, give them the resources they need to grow and thrive, and provide them an exceptional home for when their businesses begin to take off. The vision started with Arizona State University President Michael Crow, who wanted to create the kind of technological and innovation-minded environment that would attract companies and job creation to the metro Phoenix area.

In addition to becoming home to more than 50 companies from 10 countries around the world, SkySong has become the anchor to what economic developers are calling Scottsdale’s McDowell Road Corridor, a community where innovation, technology, business and retailers have converged to create tremendous economic opportunities. Scottsdale economic development officials said more than $200 million of new capital in being invested along the McDowell Road Corridor. And the economic impact of SkySong — which was estimated to be $10 billion over the course of the next 30 years — is only expected to grow with the addition of SkySong 3.

“The targeted opening date for SkySong 3 is in 2014,” said SkySong spokesman Tom Evans. “We anticipate a kick-off in construction activity in the second quarter of 2013. In the meantime, work is continuing on the new residential units that are part of the SkySong project. The $45 million, four-story project will include 325 residential units, and is being built by MT Builders. Todd & Associates is the architecture firm for the project. The first of those units will open for occupancy in October 2013.”

Evans said you can expect to see companies that will mirror the energy of the firms that filled SkySong 1 and 2 when SkySong 3 opens.

“The businesses at SkySong share the spirit of innovation and technology that is so critical to the vision of SkySong,” Evans said. “Companies such as Jobing.com, Channel Intelligence and Adaptive Curriculum will serve as models for the new companies coming into SkySong 3 and for the smaller companies in the ASU SkySong incubator space. The companies at SkySong 3 will also continue the positive impact the project is having on the McDowell Road Corridor, thanks to the success of SkySong 1 and 2 over the past few years.”