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CITY OF SCOTTSDALE, APPALOOSA BRANCH LIBRARY

INSPIRED DESIGN:

Like a mirage, the library appears to float above an arroyo as iridescent walls shift colors with the day’s changing light. Appaloosa library has clean modern lines. The interior feels light and airy in the main reading space which features indirect light to protect the books and light colored finishes to reflect light from the roof deck down to the reading room below. The project also makes a nod to nature in its honest use of natural materials. The project showcases polished concrete floors and a huge monolithic exposed concrete wall rising out of the earth. The building metal panels have a special color shift paint that will look purple from one angle and green from another. It is a truly unique building. 

THOUGHTFUL STEWARDSHIP:

The building epitomizes environmental design without sacrificing aesthetics, earning the library LEED® Gold certification. The large east-side patio and continuous north-side glazing helps blur the line between interior space and the outdoors, allowing visitors to connect with the surrounding mountains and Sonoran Desert.

CREATIVE TEAMWORK:

DWL and Doug Sydnor Architects partnered on this project. We held many programming sessions with the City of Scottsdale and local library employees to finetune unique solutions for a truly special community asset. 

ENDURING COMMITMENT:

The vibrancy of the library’s public spaces is captured at the main Reading Room, with its high-sloped ceiling, natural light from multiple sources and lounge seating. The reading room is separated from staff spaces and meeting rooms by a geologically-layered concrete wall composed of three horizontal bands of exposed concrete. A clerestory and panoramic north windows topped by smaller windows that spell out the name of the library in Morse code provide a constant level of filtered light throughout much of the day.

COMPLETION: 2009

SECTOR: COMMUNITY

SIZE: 21,242 SF

DELIVERY METHOD: CMAR

AWARDS:

Valley Forward Association Environmental Excellence Merit Award – Building & Structures Civic category, 2011

AIA Western Mountain Regional Honor Award, 2010

AZRE Magazine ‘RED’ Award for ‘Most Sustainable Project,’ 2010

Library Journal’s New Landmark Library – Top 10, 2011

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