Road Trip Pt. 7- Arcosanti
Hidden an hour north of Phoenix, Arizona, lies a strange, experimental urban community that began in the 1970’s. Paolo Soreli, the architect and mastermind behind the project, is 89 years old, but still visits the sight every Wednesday to give lectures. Soleri thought of the concept during the oil crisis in the 70’s, when he decided that something had to be done to combat urban sprawl, and basically eliminate the need for cars. His solution was a completely self-contained community, in which you live where you work where you recreate. The initial plan was to have the place house 5,000 people, but it currently only houses about 100. While it may never be finished, the design of the place is very modern and utilizes concrete whenever it can, for its heating/cooling properties. Soleri believed in using “passive” solar energy, which involved facing windows strategically and using things such as canopies to keep things cool in the summer, and remove them in the winter. And for not that much money, you can stay in the hotel rooms, one of which the “skylight suite”, which boasts the greatest view of sunrises and sunsets in the Arizona sky.