Saturday, April 29th, 2017 - 9:26 am 
(Arizona time)

Valley of the Sun Solar and Sustainability Tour

Downloadable Tour Guide: PDF format-High Resolution (16.8 MB)
PDF format-Low Resolution (0.7 MB)
Interactive Map Overview of Locations (Compliments of Sheldon McGee)

Site Descriptions

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Becker Residence

October 27 - Saturday only
9:00 am - 12:00 noon & 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

  12176 E Double Tree Ranch Road
Scottsdale, AZ 85259
Directions: From 101 in Scottsdale, take the Shea Blvd exit. Travel east on E. Shea Blvd. Turn right onto N. 124th Street. Turn right onto E. Doubletree Ranch Road. Home is at end of the road on the right.
  The Becker Residence is the result of a creative solution to an awkwardly shaped site squeezed by
utility corridors and a desert wash that was previously scraped bare and left by a subdivision developer.
The owners decided that the lot's deep arroyo and view of the McDowell Mountains outweighed the

Rainwater harvesting, site contours and swales were constructed to collect rain water on the lot for
abundant plant growth while creating a desert oasis. A gray water recovery system collects household
water that would otherwise go down the drain.

Southwestern tree species and plants were selected for drought tolerance and year-round color. Most of
the trees adjacent to the residence were placed for shading and reducing heat gain.

Other features include sun protected building entries; graywater collection from bathroom sinks and
showers that supply a 400 gallon storage tank to irrigate trees; rainwater collection from roofs directed
to landscape areas via roof drains; thermal mass (concrete flooring) and exposed masonry that tempers
daily indoor temperatures and contributes to healthy indoor environment; and use of local and regional
materials including masonry, stone and recycled metal.
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John Douglas Architects

October 27 - Saturday only
9:00 am - 12:00 noon & 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

  4400 North Civic Center Plaza
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
Directions: From Camelback Road
and Scottsdale Road, head east on
E. Camelback Road toward
Arizona Canal Trail. Turn right
onto North Civic Center Plaza.
Turn right onto East Indian Plaza.
East Indian Plaza turns left and
becomes North Civic Center Plaza.
  The Douglas Architects Office is a major renovation of an existing office space located on an infill lot in
downtown Scottsdale. The project involved a reconfiguration of a 1,614 sq. ft. two story structure into a
2,382 sq. ft. two story building. The project was initially submitted and certified under Scottsdale’s
Commercial Green Building Program. With funding from the city awarded Energy Efficiency and
Conservation Block Grant, the Douglas Office was able to receive a post-occupancy performance
evaluation. The assessment was used to help certify the building under the new city adopted International
Green Construction Code (IgCC). The Douglas office building structure reuses 68% of existing building
materials, reduces annual energy costs by 42.3%, supplies 25% of annual electric energy consumption
with an roof deck mounted solar PV system, provides daylighting in at least 50% of regularly occupied
spaces and reduces indoor water use by 21%.
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Edwards Residence

October 27 -Saturday only
9:00 am - 12:00 noon & 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

  8151 E. Smokehouse Trail
Scottsdale, AZ 85266
Directions: From the intersection of N. Scottsdale Road and E. Carefree Hwy., go south on Scottsdale Road about 1/2 mile. Turn east onto E. Westland Rd. Travel east on Westland Road 1 mile to Hayden Road then turn south on Hayden Road. Turn east onto Smokehouse Road — 4th house on right.
  Completed in 1999, the Edwards Residence in North Scottsdale incorporates many Green Building elements in its construction. Its Southwestern design blends with the surrounding desert with an emphasis on sustainability.

The Edwards residence was also the first straw bale home to be permitted in the City of Scottsdale.
Features include:
  • Straw bale R-50 walls
  • Thermal mass floors
  • Cooling tower
  • Thermal pane windows
  • water heating
  • Grid-tied 5.0 kW PV system
  • Highly insulated attic, R-67
  • Dual-drain plumbing for graywater
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Edwards Remodel

October 27 - Saturday only
9:00 am - 12:00 noon & 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

  8737 East Valley View Road
Scottsdale, AZ 85250
Directions: From Pima Rd. and McDonald Rd. go West to 86th street then turn south (left). Go 7 blocks until you come to Valley View Rd. turn East (left) drive about a block the house is on the south side (right) follow the house numbers.
  This House was built in 1961 — the era of cheap energy, and the insulation and mechanical system equipment reflected it. There was no wall insulation, just masonry block and single pane windows and HVAC equipment with a SEER rating of about 8 located on the roof, with the leaky duct work running through the hot attic. This is the typical situation found in the existing inventory of homes in the valley.
An attic fire provided the opportunity for a complete remodel.

It was decided to reconstruct this home as a super energy efficient structure, which allowed the Owner to minimize the expense of future utility bills but also offers a good example of a practical approach to modernizing existing Homes.

The thermal envelope is the center piece of this remodel and is achieved by replacing the windows, wrapping the masonry walls with a unique wall system that has aluminum backed foam and a ventilated air space for the radiant barrier and air flow. The ceiling area is a hybrid that is fully ventilated for the radiant barrier and air flow benefits while adapting the roof trusses to encapsulate the HVAC duct work within the conditioned air space.

Mechanical equipment is the most efficient available in today's market with a SEER rating of 20. The appliances, lighting and plumbing fixtures will all be selected to optimize today's cutting-edge technologies.

Indoor environmental health is another consideration, by utilizing continuous mechanical air exchanges, selecting low VOC products, and providing easy-to-clean surfaces.

Passive solar adaptations include incorporating large overhangs and strategic placement of vegetation. Active solar PV and thermal water heating applications are currently being planned for by providing the space and integrating conduit and piping to the appropriate locations for gray water, and other green technologies.
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Barnhart Studio

October 27 - Saturday only
9:00 am - 12:00 noon & 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

  506 N. Center St.
Mesa, AZ 85201
Directions: From Main Street and Center Street in Mesa, north on Center for ½ mile to University. Studio is on West side of street approximately 500 feet north of University.
  Completed in 2008, the studio is constructed from glass and steel, and a vast amount of additional material in this project are used or recycled. The Studio is 3,700+ sf with 28 foot ceilings. Beautiful natural light pours through the 7 skylights and north windows.

The Studio is complete with a rock climbing wall, sculpture garden, a fireman’s pole, and a VW Bus mounted 12 feet off the floor that has been converted to a bedroom, and accessible by a glass catwalk.

A 1,500 lb arched steel and concrete-ball entry gate gently pivots across the driveway to the front, and a lushly planted xeriscaped sculpture garden graces the rear of the property.
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Catlin Residence

October 27 - Saturday only
9:00 am - 12:00 noon & 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

  120 S. Omaha Street
Mesa, AZ 85206
Directions: From Main Street and Val Vista, drive East on Main Street. Turn right on S. Norfolk. Make a left turn on E. Alder. At the end of that street turn right onto Omaha. The home is the next to last house on the right side of Omaha.
  The homeowners created a system designed to eliminate all electric bills – even during the summer!

There are three different photovoltaic systems with three different inverters located here (roof- and pole-mounted panels with one system having battery backup), for a total of 12 KW of installed capacity. The home also features:
  • A solar water heater
  • Solar clothes dryer (clothes line)
  • Solar-powered attic fan
  • A water feature with fish, raised gardens and fruit and pecan trees.
Information about energy production, system costs, and return on investment will be provided.
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Dalrymple Residence

October 27 - Saturday only
9:00 am - 12:00 noon only
Please note: open only during morning.

  4622 E. Palo Verde Dr.
Phoenix, AZ 85013
Directions: From the intersection
of Camelback and 44th Street: Go
north approximately one mile on
44th Street. 44th Street curves right
(east) and becomes McDonald
Drive. Take the second right
(south) onto 47th St. Take the first
right (west) onto Palo Verde Drive.
Residence is the 3rd house on the
  In their tireless quest to create as sustainable a home as possible, the Dalrymples are happy to share more
progress since the last time their 1975 block home was on tour. By completing the “outsulation” and a
esthetic exterior remodel, they are now at a 75% energy reduction since beginning their journey.
Eco-friendly interior finishes create a warm and inviting feel while ample daylighting and views
bring the outdoors in.

Notable features include:
  • SEER 16 variable speed heat pump
  • Solar water heating
  • 3 kW solar PV system
  • Tubular skylight
  • Demand-activated hot water recirculation pump
  • Natural clay plasters
  • High-efficiency pool pump
  • Patio cover with retractable shade fabric
  • Cork and reclaimed FSC wood flooring
  • Xeriscaping, composting, food production
  • Recycled FSC paper countertop
  • Rainwater harvesting system, dual-flush toilets
  • High-efficiency fiberglass windows and doors throughout
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Peris Residence

October 27 - Saturday only
9:00 am - 12:00 noon & 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

  337 West Roma Avenue
Phoenix, AZ 85013
Directions: From the intersection of Indian School and Central Avenue, go north on Central Avenue. Take a left onto West Turney Avenue. Take a right onto North 3rd Avenue. Go one block to West Roma Avenue. Take a left. The house is on the south side of the street.

In the mid-1930s Yaple Park was the country getaway from urban Phoenix. Now, only two blocks away from the Central Avenue Metro stop at Campbell, this 1938 Territorial Revival house has been beautifully restored and tastefully expanded with an outdoor patio to create a true urban retreat without compromising its historic character.

The southern exposure of the backyard made it a perfect candidate for a passive solar ramada, which provides full shade in the summer months, full sun on the house during the winter months, and pleasant partial shade inbetween. The thermal mass of the brick and stucco southern wall gently radiates heat into the house during winter evenings.

Back to the future? History is replete with buildings that were built to respond to their environment "without" the advantages of mechanical devices - Adobe, the most common material in the world, is a long tested and accepted material appropriate for desert conditions - with its long thermal lag and heat carrying capacity. Learn from history, with a contemporary view - from the owner, Luis Peris - a specialist on environmental impacts, mitigation, and daylighting issues and strategies. The past, accepted for what it brings, combined with the new, sun control and daylighting strategies and techniques, coupled with environmental strategies like thermal decompression provided by the landscaping and location - give a unique and important perspective as to what can/should be done today. Old and new -to create a future of appropriate solar and sustainable buildings in the valley.

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Titmus Residence /
The Bee Oasis

October 28 - Sunday only
9:00 am - 12:00 noon & 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Also special Solar & Xeriscape Workshops at 9:00am and 1:00pm.

  2652 E. Butte Circle 
Mesa, AZ 85213
Directions: From the intersection
of Main Street and Lindsay in
Mesa, travel north on Lindsay. Take
the 2nd left onto East Billings
Street. Take the 3rd right onto
North 26th Street. Take the 1st right onto East Butte Circle.

A detailed tour of actual examples of solar shading, solar lighting, solar dryer, solar hot water and
solar cooking. Then rainwater harvesting, worm box, composting, hybrid chicken tractor in the
veggie garden, bee condo’s, and much, much more.....

Also, a Workshop experience of the Bee Oasis and its many Solar aspects at 9:00 am and 1:00 pm.

The bee oasis is a designed sustainable living homesite, with no one element in the design
being more important than another, since all are connected. This is Permaculture and our family is
on the path to an intentional, sustainable living practice.

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