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Agave Library / will bruder+PARTNERS

  • 01:00 - 23 May, 2011
Agave Library / will bruder+PARTNERS
Agave Library / will bruder+PARTNERS, © Bill Timmerman
© Bill Timmerman

© Bill Timmerman © Bill Timmerman © Bill Timmerman © Bill Timmerman +14

  • Architects

  • Location

    Phoenix, AZ, United States
  • Architect

    will bruder+PARTNERS
  • Project Team

    Will Bruder, AIA, lead design architect, Richard Jensen, AIA, project manager, Chris Balzano, RA, project architect, Dominique Price, RA, project architect, Marjorie Fichthorn Whitton, interior design Ben Nesbeitt, Rob Gaspard, Joaquin Roesch
  • Mechanical Engineer

    Ideas for the Built Environment
  • Structural Engineer

    rudow + berry
  • Plumbing And Electrical Engineer

    Bridgers & Paxton Consulting Engineers
  • Civil Engineer

    Hess Rountree
  • Landscape Architect

    Ten Eyck Landscape Architects
  • Lighting

    Roger Smith Lighting Design
  • Public Artist

    Kendall Buster
  • Acoustical

    McKay Conant Hoover
  • General Contractor

    hardison/downey construction
  • Area

    25410.0 ft2
  • Project Year

  • Photographs

From the architect. The design of this 25,405 sqf branch library for the City of Phoenix addresses issues of excellence and affordability in sustainable design. Impacted within a Planned Shopping Center in north Phoenix behind a gas station, car wash, fast food restaurant, and supermarket, the Library’s construction and material pallet quietly draws from, and (re)presents, the language of its retail neighbors. 

© Bill Timmerman
© Bill Timmerman

Stacked bond concrete masonry units and glass enclose the simple rectangular volume of a hard-trowelled concrete floor with carpeted ‘area rugs’, green sandblasted cmu walls, exposed gang-nail trusses, glu-lam beams, steel pipe columns, and sparingly used painted gyp-board interior partitions.


In the tradition of banks, post offices, courthouses, and city halls of fledgling western frontier towns, whose dignified, yet paper-thin street facades belie their utilitarian construction behind, the Library’s ‘false front’ mediates between its two realities: one of a limited budget, the other of the civic presence expected in a public institution. With its torquing false metal scrim curving along the site’s eastern edge of 36th avenue, the Library’s ‘cowboy front’ gives scale, presence, and distinction commensurate with it position in the community. 

© Bill Timmerman
© Bill Timmerman

Constructed in the tradition of the old lathe houses of Phoenix’s Desert Botanical Garden using off-the-shelf galvanized hat channels, the scale and form of the scrim also recalls the tradition of drive-in movie theaters so common across Post-War American suburbs.

© Bill Timmerman
© Bill Timmerman
Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address. Cite: "Agave Library / will bruder+PARTNERS" 23 May 2011. ArchDaily. Accessed . <>