Located in Phoenix, United States, ASU Polytechnic Campus was designed by Lake|Flato Architects. The three largest buildings turn their long sides to the east and west protecting the courtyards and open-air atria from the monsoon driven rain and desert dust. These shady, open air atria provide environmentally sensitive social spaces that maximise visibility, daylighting, and the sense of community while minimising energy usage.
By removing 14 acres of asphalt and concrete and transforming it into a desert landscaped mall, storm water is slowed, captured in smaller detention basins throughout the new mall and in turn, used to nourish the desert landscaping. The strategy minimises the load on the existing storm water detention basin, but more importantly, it establishes a beautiful indigenous landscape as the heart of the new campus.