Sustainability in Action: Creative Center of Scottsdale

Creative Arts Center of Scottsdale’s Sustainable Features

Contour Architecture specializes in sustainable, urban design in Phoenix Metro.  For the Creative Center of Scottsdale we selected the International Green Construction Code as our guidepost.  For this urban infill, adaptive reuse project sustainable architecture with a modern aesthetic was integral to the project from the outset:


  • One of the most sustainable things we can do is to preserve what we already have.  The Creative Center of Scottsdale will transform three existing structures into a community-based business committed to artistic expression and innovation.  The existing concrete block walls, wood floors, and wood roof structures will remain intact and exposed, revealing the history of the building while also looking toward a vibrant and sustainable future.
  • The Creative Center of Scottsdale is dedicated to supporting local businesses.  All fixtures and materials were selected looking at the proximity of their creation to home.   The interior insulation is made from blue jeans and produced right here in Chandler!  All the bathroom fixtures are ‘Made in the USA’ and within 500 miles of Phoenix.
  • The interior walls will be made from wood collected from forests certified to forest sustainably.  This means that for every tree they cut down for construction use, they will replace it with a new tree.


  •  All artists’ spaces will be naturally lit by windows and skylights.  Natural light from multiple directions will offer the beauty and balance of diffused and balanced light throughout the day.  Even on rare cloudy days in Scottsdale, highly efficient LED lights on sensors will offer a color temperature similar to natural daylight.
  •  An energy efficient building combined with solar photovoltaics will save the Creative Center of Scottsdale more than 60% of its energy use – 60,171 kwh / year – that’s equivalent to the carbon offset by 35 acres of US Forest in a year.
  •  The most significantly contributing upgrades to the building include natural daylight from windows and skylights paired with LED lights, an efficient building skin that protects the building from the intense desert heat, and a highly efficient heating and cooling system.
  •  Our studies looked at the benefits of a high efficiency HVAC system – the SEER rating lets you know how efficient your equipment is.  When comparing SEER 13, SEER 16 and SEER 17 equipment, the SEER 17 equipment, although higher in initial cost, also paid for itself much more quickly.  The savings will pay for the better equipment in only 4 years!
  •  Breathe easy!  The air inside the Creative Center of Scottsdale will be free-and-clear of formaldyhyde and VOCs.  It will also be cleaned with high-impact filters to keep all the pollen, dust, and pollutants out of the air.


  • Water savings is not just central to the project, but celebrated.  The project will save 58% of city potable water over standard landscaping.  This is accomplished while still planting a lush and inviting trees and plants.  The courtyard pavement will allow the rain to seep through and go directly to the plants and trees rather than directly into the City storm water system.  Rainwater from the roof and the air conditioning units will be collected in planters around the building that will overflow with water like a water feature when it rains.
  • The Creative Center of Scottsdale wants you to ride!!!  Over 20 bikes can be parked adjacent to the Creative Center of Scottsdale.
  • The Creative Center of Scottsdale will also reduce urban heat island effects predominant in urban areas.  Large shade trees, permeable pavement, and cool roofs will all reduce the amount of heat reflected back into the atmosphere from the buildings.
  • A lush landscape surrounding the project will cool the surrounding temperature while creating a comfortable and welcoming environment.  All plants will be low-water use and watered with high-efficiency systems that contribute to an overall reduction of water use by 58% throughout the complex.

    Interested in getting monthly updates from Contour?  Join our mailing list! 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.
Required fields are marked:*


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>