Tag Archives: arizona science center

Phoenix Museums

Phoenix Museums: History, Culture And More

Interested in the history of Phoenix or the culture surrounding it? Or are you just looking for a good, educational and interesting time? Check out one of many Phoenix museums, focusing on everything from art and music, to science and history.

With so many from which to choose, here are five well-known museums located throughout Phoenix and the state:

Arizona Science Center

Located in the heart of downtown Phoenix, the Arizona Science Center is one of the more well-known Phoenix museums. With more than 350 permanent exhibits, as well as a number of nationally traveling exhibits, the Arizona Science Center gives visitors a great hands-on look at science, nature, the human body and other subjects.

The experience is constantly changing thanks to the traveling exhibits that stop by; even if you’ve visited once before, there’s always something new to experience and explore. The Arizona Science Center also features a planetarium, an IMAX theater and a series of multimedia classrooms.

[stextbox id=”grey”]600 E. Washington St.
Phoenix, AZ 85004
(602) 716-2000[/stextbox]

Heard Museum

The Heard Museum doesn’t focus specifically on scientific exhibits; rather, this is the place you want to see if you’re interested in the history and culture of Native Americans in Arizona. This isn’t just a history museum, either. It features both ancient and contemporary art and literature, as well as a collection of exhibits about Native American history.

[stextbox id=”grey”]2301 N. Central Ave.
Phoenix, AZ 85004
(602) 252-8840[/stextbox]

Phoenix Art Museum

If it isn’t science or culture you’re looking for, then what about art? The Phoenix Art Museum is another one of the great Phoenix museums … so great, in fact, that it just might be one of, if not the biggest art museum in the southwestern United States.

The museum features, among other things, more than 18,000 works of art from all over the world, as well as the occasional festival, live performance or other event.

[stextbox id=”grey”]1625 N. Central Ave.
Phoenix, AZ 85004
(602) 257-1222[/stextbox]

Pueblo Grande Museum Archeological Park

This one isn’t the kind of museum that most people would think of when they hear the word “museum”; it’s actually a preserved site that is thought to be where a group of Native Americans settled as far back as 450 AD.

These ruins of a platform mound and a series of irrigation canals offer visitors a unique look at ancient Arizona and the people who lived there long before we did, and they’re definitely worth a look.

[stextbox id=”grey”]4619 E. Washington St.
Phoenix, AZ 85034
(602) 495-0900[/stextbox]

Musical Instrument Museum

Probably the most recent of the Phoenix museums on this list, the Musical Instrument Museum is a place any music lover should visit at least once. It has a collection of more than 13,000 musical instruments from all places and times; nearly 200 countries and territories are represented in its collection. Guests are given a wireless headset as they explore the museum, allowing them to hear the music of an exhibit as they approach it. A system like this gives visitors a unique experience.

[stextbox id=”grey”]4725 E. Mayo Boulevard
Phoenix, AZ 85050
(480) 478-6000 [/stextbox]

What other Phoenix museums do you like?
Let us know in the comments section.



2011 AIA Arizona Design Awards

The American Institute of Architects Arizona Design Awards recognize excellence in design, planning, and construction of projects located anywhere in the world that are designed by AIA Arizona architects registered and licensed in Arizona.

The Design Awards honor the highest standards of design in response to user requirements, site, context, climate, and environment. Each entry, regardless of size or classification, is judged individually on the basis of total design merit.

Awards are given the categories of honor, merit, and citation (in order of importance). Certificates were presented to award-winning AIA Arizona members at the 2011 Celebrate Architecture Awards Presentation held Oct. 22 at the Phoenix Zoo.

2502 N. 1st Avenue

2502 N. 1st Avenue - Arizona Design Awards

Owner: repp design + construction

Contractor: repp design + construction

The goals of the project were to adapt a 30-year-old retail space for use as a commercial office while simultaneously respecting the project budget and larger goals for sustainability: including natural day-lighting, water and electric conservation, and durability. The primary challenge was the west façade and main entry. The existing building did not successfully address the undesirable solar heat gain and glare, the adjacent road noise, or the poor vehicular/pedestrian separation at the entry. The renovation introduces a custom steel structure and façade that achieves the reduction of solar heat gain and glare, introduces a new entry sequence that includes a landscaped courtyard, and provides a unique identifying feature for the building and its occupants. The metal structure supports new solar panels that provide power for the building and screens new water harvesting cisterns.

Whispering Hope Ranch

Whispering Hope Ranch - Arizona Design Awards

Owner: Whispering Hope Ranch Foundation

Architect: Studio Ma

Contractor: The Weitz Company

Whispering Hope Ranch is a camp for children with special medical needs located in a ponderosa pine forest just below the Mogollon Rim. With its streams, meadows and views, the Ranch provides a welcome respite from Phoenix’s extreme summer heat. An extensive path system connects the many features of the 45-acre site allowing children to wander freely and to have therapeutic interactions with the rescued animals that reside there. The site posed many challenges, including poor soils and excessive slopes. The combination of strong sunlight and summer monsoon rains also had to be considered. The program includes a dining hall, administration offices, single and double cabins and an infirmary. The camp’s many structures are organized through the sloping shed/butterfly roof motif, which provide large porches for camp activities. Natural materials are used throughout.

Arizona Science Center

AZ Science Center - Arizona Design Awards

Owner: City of Phoenix

Architect: Architekton

Contractor: Brycon Construction

Designed by a critically acclaimed architect in 1995, the Arizona Science Center remains an exciting cultural destination. Its success overwhelmed the outdoor entry court with more than 1,200 visitors per day, often queuing in the severe Phoenix heat. This project introduced a new entry that created a more comfortable experience for those in line and enhanced the functionality of the lobby. The design solution was to float a “cloud” over the existing circulation path from the upper entrance level to the below grade admissions courtyard. The zinc-clad element reconciles with the original architect’s concrete and metal-clad building forms, becoming a new, appropriate object in the landscape. The resulting assemblage creates a natural extension of the building composition to the east and south.

Cedar Street Residence 2010

Cedar Street - Arizona Design Awards

Owner: Matthew & Maria Salenger

Architect: colab studio, llc

Contractor: Build, Inc.

At this renovation of a 1954 bungalow in Tempe, a tight budget necessitated simplicity and efficiency: a large central courtyard; a flexible, transformable house. The existing house was gutted. Three new walls were positioned. Four mobile wardrobes were added, each with a built-in door. Bedrooms may be created or taken away as needed. Re-used steel frames and decking create new a entry and patios.

The addition: Mobile millwork separates the great room from the studio. When entertaining, the millwork moves east to create a 1,000 SF dining/living space. If the studio grows, the millwork moves west. Multiple locations for power/data/speaker connections in the floor for millwork placement. All spaces view into the courtyard that is surrounded by translucent, reflective glass.

Sunnyslope Sustainable

Sunnyslope - Arizona Design Awards

Owner: Marlene Imirzian & Associates LLC, Architects

Architect: Marlene Imirzian & Associates LLC, Architects

Contractor: Marlene Imirzian & Associates LLC, Architects

This project highlights sustainable, adaptive re-use of a modest 1950s office building in north central Phoenix. Located on Central Avenue, the project transforms what was a stark, heat-generating site and building into a cool, multi-layered oasis that buffers the building from the movement and noise of the street. Through natural, sustainable intervention, it has established identity and place in the urban environment. The strategies utilized are designed to rejuvenate the building and site, improve the surrounding urban setting, and reduce any negative impact on the environment. The project establishes the importance of designing sustainable and beautiful solutions for the small urban lot that pervades the Phoenix area that if duplicated would substantially improve the city.

Diamond Head Mountain House

Diamond Head - Arizona Design Awards

Architect: Rob Paulus Architects Ltd.

Construction Management: Rob Paulus Architects Ltd

This house for an astronomer in the Tucson Mountains takes full advantage of its sloping site to create a dramatic living arrangement in a harsh, yet beautiful environment. Working with a minimal footprint, the stacked scheme utilizes strategic view openings as well as a vertical progression of spaces to proceed from enclosed and earthbound to lofty and skyward. An observatory on top of the hill with remote viewing from inside the house completes the scheme. Passive solar orientation creates large openings to north views with shaded glazing at south vistas that include Kitt Peak and the Tucson Mountains. Operational shade panels control morning sunlight at the lower and upper floor east bedrooms, while a small western aperture frames the colorful sunsets prominent in the Southwest. Simple geometries and rusted corrugated metal contrast with the varied color and textures of the Sonoran Desert.

990 Offices

990 Offices - Arizona Design Awards

Owner: Randi Dorman + Rob Paulus

Architect: Rob Paulus Architects Ltd.

Contractor: Mega Trend Construction

The design of the 990 Offices transforms a 30-year-old auto repair shop into multi-tenant professional office space. Registered for LEED certification, it employs passive solar orientation, a heavily insulated enclosure system, efficient daylighting strategies and a new aluminum rain screen to create an efficient and inspiring work environment. Additionally, 3,000 gallons of underground rainwater catchment actively irrigate landscaping and 400 SF of raised bed organic garden. Inside, an undulating wood ceiling, resembling the form of a violin, provides spatial interest and acoustic relief.  Lush Sonoran Desert planting, fractured rock from another project excavation and a re-purposed jet cowling sculpture enliven the outdoor spaces to create an oasis with shade and plant color. The building plays off its industrial and residential neighbors in proportion and materiality, including nearby residential adaptive-reuse and urban infill projects. 990 Offices completes the block with complementary design and a common sensitivity to smart urban development.

Nursing & Exercise Science Building at Mesa CC

Mesa Community College Nursing - Arizona Design Awards

Owner: Maricopa County Community College District

Architect: SmithGroup

Contractor: McGough Construction

This project aims to honor an existing 1960s structure and its impressive “bones” by exposing the existing concrete waffle roof structure throughout the interior and wrapping the exterior on two sides with additional program. The new wrap respects the latest contemporary facilities on campus while not overpowering the original. The bisecting “interior mall” celebrates instruction through transparency and honors the old and the new coming together, harvesting diffused natural light as the new structure hovers over the pedestrian walkway. The tilting of the metal volume creates a small sliver of daylight glazing and view of the sky for the classrooms along the project’s south and east facades. The construction of the new building is resolved as an exposed steel frame clad with familiar campus materials.

Urban In-Fill

Urban InFill - Arizona Design Awards

Owner: Andy Byrnes, AIA

Architect: the construction zone ltd

Contractor: the construction zone ltd

An urban infill project in Phoenix adjacent to a major freeway, its linear configuration maximizes the buildable area and parking while shading the site with the structure. The planning and layout allows for an open and flowing work environment for the company that occupies the space. The building is an honest expression of the materials and systems used to define the structure. The project is an investigation of how materials interact. It is the execution of these connections that make the architecture. Materials are used honestly with minimal finish or adornment. The appropriate use of a material maximizes the value added by reducing waste, increasing construction productivity, and allowing for the finest craftsmanship possible. The goal was to blur the separation between conceptualizing and building sustainable architecture.

Rio Salado Audubon Center

Rio Salado Audubon - Arizona Design Awards

Owner: National Audubon Society/City of Phoenix

Architect: Weddle Gilmore

Contractor: Okland Construction

The riparian habitat restoration of the Rio Salado is the result of a $100M investment by the City of Phoenix and the Army Corps of Engineers to transform the dry river bed that had become an urban scar. The Center is the focus of this habitat restoration and is strategically located in the multi-cultural heart of the city. It strives to reach urban children, educating a new generation of conservationists and supporting the growth of a conservation ethic. The Rio Salado Audubon Center has received LEED Platinum certification.

ASU College of Nursing and Health Innovation Phase 2

ASU Nursing - Arizona Design Awards

Owner: City of Phoenix

Architect: SmithGroup

Contractor: DPR Construction

The rapid growth of ASU and the birth of its new downtown Phoenix campus create a special architectural and urban opportunity. A collection of two existing buildings and three newly constructed facilities thread together a cohesive and identifiable campus environment and identity. This compact, five-story building serves both as primary gateway on the campus’ marquee corner and is home to the largest nursing program in the U.S. The design delicately balances the dreams of the ultimate three-headed client. As owner, the City of Phoenix required an urban building that would aid the lack of an urban feel and shade in its downtown core. ASU required an elegant icon on a tight budget. The College of Nursing and Health Innovation desperately needed a new home, but didn’t want to lose its identity along the way.

AZ News Health

AZ News Roundup – Health & Wellness

Welcome to the AZ News Roundup for April 4th

This week we are focusing on information and services offered for the health and wellness of Arizona residence both in and outside the medical field. They cover resources and information that help improve the mental and physical health of many.


BODY WORLDS & The Brain I Quit! Anti-Smoking Campaign

Arizona Science Center's Anti-Smoking CampaignOn April 11th, the campaign against smoking in Arizona Science Center’s Gunther von Hagens’ BODY WORLDS & The Brain is offering free admission for any guest pledging to quit smoking. The American Lung Association and American Cancer Society will be on site to celebrate the launch and inform Arizona Science Center visitors in order to help guests become and stay a quitter. Read More >>


Holistic Healers Directory Offers Free Perks

Part of CloudNine Marketing, Inc., Hhdirectory.com and www.holsitichealingnews.com, is offering the opportunity to those in the field of integrative and alternative medicine to receive a free listing and publish articles pertaining to holistic health and wellness for free. Read More >>


Tucson’s AZ Pest Control Company Launches Pest ID App

AZ PEST, pest control itunes appAZ PEST provides a free app that allows you to simply take a snapshot of the insect or bug you want to identify then use the app to submit it to the Tucson-based pest control specialists, who will respond to your inquiry within 24 hours. It is the first pest company in the U.S. to launch an app like this. Read More >>


Microbiology and Indoor Air Quality Testing Laboratory Expands

EMSL Analytical, Inc., a nationwide leader and local provider of indoor air quality, environmental, food and materials testing has recently moved to a new facility in Phoenix, AZ. The new facility will allow EMSL the ability to add additional service lines to its current offering of microbiology, mold, bacteria, legionella, asbestos and sewage contamination testing services. Read More >>


Oak Creek Ranch School’s 10 Tips For Parents

The Oak Creek Ranch School’s principal provides ten tips for parents to help their children with ADD/ADHD be successful in school. The school’s curriculum and programs are designed to help ADD/ADHD, under-motivated and underachieving teens, ages 12 to 18, accomplish their academic goals while developing valuable social and interpersonal skills. Read More >>

Arizona Places to Visit - AZ Business Magazine March/April 2011

Arizona Places To See

Places to go 2011


1- Arizona Science Center, Phoenix

Get your hands on more than 300 different exhibits, explore the planetarium and check out the latest film on its state-of-the-art, five-story theater screen.

2- Canyon de Chelly National Monument, Chinle

Canyon de Chelly National Monument offers visitors the chance to learn about Southwestern Indian history, from the earliest basketmakers to the Navajo Indians who live and farm here. Cultural resources of Canyon de Chelly include architecture, artifacts and rock imagery.

3- Desert Botanical Garden, Phoenix

Stroll through the living museum and learn about 20,000 different plant species in Arizona. Specialized tours, events, workshops, family activities, café and gift shop are available.

4- Grand Canyon National Park

Visit one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the world. Take a trail ride by mule or the Grand Canyon Railway into the depths of the canyon. Hiking and camping are also available.

5- Hoover Dam, Nevada-Arizona border

The Bureau of Reclamation started conducting tours through the Hoover Dam in 1937. Today, close to 1 million visitors a year take the tour and millions more drive across the dam. Hoover Dam is the highest concrete dam in the U.S.

6- Kartchner Caverns State Park, Benson

Kartchner Caverns is a stunning limestone cavern system in southeastern Arizona, discovered in 1974 by two amateur cavers from Tucson. It is host to world-class cave formations considered to be the best of their kind.

7- Montezuma Castle National Monument, Camp Verde

An enduring legacy of the prehistoric Sinagua, this multi-storied, 20-room, ancient Indian cliff dwelling was built more than six centuries ago. The stone, timber and adobe dwelling is 80 percent intact, making it one of the best preserved cliff dwellings in the U.S.

8- Tucson Studios, Tucson

Old Tucson Studios is Arizona’s Hollywood in the Desert since 1939. This world-famous working film location offers fun for the whole family including guided historical set tours, live stunt shows, gunfights, and saloon musicals plus rides for the kids. While you’re here, enjoy a trail ride in the beautiful Arizona Sonora Desert.

9- Slide Rock State Park, Sedona

The park is named after the famous Slide Rock, a stretch of slippery creek bottom adjacent to the homestead. Visitors may slide down a slick, natural water chute or wade and sun along the creek.

10- Tombstone

Noted as a National Historic Landmark in 1962, this historic Wild West site is home to the stagecoach, gunfight re-enactments and Wild West legends that made Tombstone famous.

Arizona Business Magazine Mar/Apr 2011

Green News Roundup- Alternative Energy Sources, Bioplastics and more

Green News Roundup – Alternative Energy Sources, Bioplastics & More

Welcome to our weekly green news roundup. This week we’ve gathered stories about green entrepreneurs, alternative energy sources, bioplastics and more.

Feel free to send along any stories you’d like to see in the roundup by e-mailing me at kasia@azbigmedia.com. Also visit AZ Green Scene for informative articles on sustainability endeavors in the Valley and state.

Body Heat: Sweden’s New Green Energy Source
This article will make you think twice the next time you’re sweating it out at the gym or simply walking to work. Swedish engineers have figured out a way to harness body heat and transfer it to energy for an office building. Though using excess body heat to warm a building isn’t a new concept, transferring it from one building to another is. The future for this new energy source is exciting!

Entrepreneurs Ditch Day Jobs to Create Green mobile apps
Two University of Arizona graduates developed a green application for the iPhone geared toward the environmentally conscious consumer. iGoGreen offers green tips for hundreds of situations.

Solar Inspired, Eco-Friendly Gallery Opens at Arizona Science Center
Arizona Science Center announced the grand opening of its newly renovated gallery, Solarville. This hands-on gallery is focused on sustainability including exhibits on how to harness and distribute sustainable green energy, exploring ways to utilize solar and renewable energy in your everyday life and more. The exhibit opens May 23 and will offer daily demonstrations.

The Promise and Pitfalls of Bioplastic
In a previous post I wrote about petroleum and its strong presence in our everyday products. Since petroleum-based plastics do not biodegrade, bioplastics are hoping to fill the gap. This article discusses the future of the environmentally friendly plastic and its role in a petroleum-based world.