Phoenix, Arizona


Owner: Maricopa Community College District

Completion Date: January 2010

Program: A two-story, 35,000-square-foot center for Paradise Valley Community College's life sciences programs. The first floor of the L-shaped steel structure houses laboratories, and the second floor contains classrooms and faculty offices. Located toward the southern side of the college's 1970s campus, the building links the north and south ends of the grounds with a pedestrian bridge running along its east facade.

Design concept and solution: Though Paradise Valley Community College is an inward-looking campus, it has so far lacked a public gathering space. The architects conceived the building's east facade as a contemporary variation on a portico: structural steel columns support a wide roof canopy that accommodates a series of indoor/outdoor "pods" made of perforated steel. The seven pods—four on the first floor, three on the second—appear to float against the building's masonry and copper facade like a series of boxy, industrial porches. The pods, which are equipped with power and blackboards and are cooled by large overhead fans, serve as collaborative spaces for students and overlook a swath of desert slated to become a campus green. The pedestrian bridge runs underneath the canopy, between the building and the pods, reinforcing the idea of the project as a kind of public porch. The architects outfitted the interiors with straightforward, what-you-see-is-what-you-get materials, many of them brought in from the exterior: there are masonry corridors, sealed concrete-slab floors, and lightweight copper wall panels.

Total construction cost: $12.7 million

Location: Phoenix, Arizona


Maricopa Community College District

Marlene Imirzian & Associates Architects
8906 North Central Avenue
Phoenix, AZ 85020
Tel: (602) 943-5279
Fax: (602) 843-5673

Personnel in architect's firm who should receive special credit:
Principal & Project Designer: Marlene Imirzian, AIA

Team: John Hammen, AIA Project Architect, Helen Pierce, RA

Lab Planner:  Design for Science

Civil Engineer: Kland Civil Engineers

Structural Engineer:  Paragon Structural Design

Mechanical, Plumbing, Electrical Engineer:  Energy Systems Design

Landscape: Moore/Swick Partnership

Other: Audio Visual:  Convergent Technologies

General contractor: Barton Malow Company (construction manager at risk)

Bill Timmerman Photography

CAD system, project management, or other software used: Autodesk REVIT



Exterior cladding
Masonry: Western Block Co.

Custom Steel Fabrications: Triad Steel

Custom aluminum curtainwall/storefront: Arcadia

Concrete Stairs: Mesa Precast & Supply

Concrete Cast in Place: Baker Concrete

Custom copper panels: Kovach Construction

Soffits: Armstrong MetalWorks

Polyurethane foam roofing: BaySystems North America

Metal roofing: Berridge Manufacturing Co.

Glass: PPG solarban 60

Wood doors: Algoma Hardwoods Vertical Grain Bamboo

Closers: LCN Closers

Exit devices: C.R. Laurence Architectural Products

Interior finishes
Acoustical ceilings: Armstrong DUNE tegular tile

Suspension grid: Armstrong

Laboratory Casework: Advanced Lab Concepts

Paints and stains: Benjamin Moore

Resilient flooring: Noraplan

Carpet: Flor

Peerless, Lightcontrol, Lithonia, Selux, Delray, Intense Lighting

Elevators/Escalators: ThyssenKrup Elevator Corp

Plumbing Fixtures:  Kohler

Add any additional building components or special equipment that made a significant contribution to this project:
Exterior fans:  Big Ass Fans