#3 Gainey Ranch

 

“Every great design begins with an even better story.” — Lorinda Mamo

Tradition, Mediterranean home with a half moon pool.

 

 

 

 

 

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#4 Desert Mountain

 

“Study nature, love nature; stay close to nature. It will never fail you.” — Frank Lloyd Wright

Organic pueblo home at Desert Mountain in Arizona.

 

 

 

 

 

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#5 Saguaro Forest II

 

“Good architecture combines balance & rhythm and is pleasing & inspiring to look at.” — Lee Hutchison

Traditional home at Desert Mountain in Arizona with natural stone features.

 

 

 

 

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#6 Silverleaf

 

“We believe the quality of our surroundings can lift the quality of our lives.” — Foster + Partners

Traditional home in Arizona with Mediterranean inspired elements.

 

 

 

 

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#7 Privada

 

“The key is that they do most of the talking, and I do most of the listening.” — Jessica Hutchison-Rough

Award winning, organic pueblo at Privada, Arizona.

 

 

 

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#8 Saguaro Forest

 

“Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun.” — Mary Lou Cook

Organic pueblo, Saguaro Forest home in Arizona, with infinity edge pool.

 

 

 

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#9 Organic Pueblo

 

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” — Maya Angelou

Organic pueblo home in Desert Highlands, Arizona, with a free-form pool and fire pit.

 

 

 

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#10 Desert Highlands

 

“I go to nature every day for inspiration in the day’s work.”  — Frank Lloyd Wright

Contemporary home in Desert Highlands, Arizona, with infinity edge pool.

 

 

 

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Pools Are Cool in the Desert Summer

During the Arizona summers, a pool is on the must list!  We have created a Best of UDA Outdoor Living Countdown to showcase some of the top water feature design trends and spectacular pools we have completed over the years.   Check back daily to see some of these top pool trends brought to life by UDA.

Top Pool Trends:

  1. The Negative Edge – Always a traditional favorite, and easy to update to today’s contemporary designs.  Known as an infinity edge or vanishing edge, these pools are best suited for a hillside lot with a spectacular view across the water.
  2. Play pools – Also known as “spools” (spa and pool combined), are great for smaller lots, families with children, and someone wanting less maintenance.  Perfect for the lock and leave property.
  3. Lap pool – For the athlete or aspiring athlete, the inherit geometry of the long, linear pool is a great fit in modern estates.
  4. Baja Shelf, Alligator Bench, or Tanning Ledge – It has many names, but is essentially a large shallow area big enough to lounge or play in a safe spot next to a deeper pool.  Add a trellis above, and you can relax all day!
  5. Reverse Negative Edge – This is where the waterline and the pool deck are at the same level, giving the visual effect of one plain.   The water can be very close, appearing to touch a building. This is very popular in resort pools.
  6. Beach Entry – A continual slope into the water is both practical and dramatic.
  7. Cantilevered Pools with Glass – If there is no budget, this is the rock star of pool design.  Make it float and then make it see through!
  8. Energy Efficient – There is a new generation of “green” mechanical and electrical equipment: Automatic covers, variable speed pumps, automated cleaning, and LED lighting.
  9. ANYTHING but Plaster & Kool Deck – There is a huge new palette of pool materials from glass tiles, natural stone coping, beadcrete, pebbletec, to black bottoms. Different is better.
  10. The Natural Pool – This is the most interesting development in the pool world. Out with the chlorine, the salt, and even the mineral treatments. Natural pools create an ecosystem of aquatic plants to keep the water clean and purified.

Enjoy the Countdown!

 

Pool Views

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Our Outdoor Living Countdown!

During the Arizona summers, a pool is on the must list!  We have created a Best of UDA Outdoor Living Countdown to showcase some of the top water feature design trends and spectacular pools we have completed over the years.   Check back daily to see some of these top pool trends brought to life by UDA.

Top Pool Trends:

  1. The Negative Edge – Always a traditional favorite, and easy to update to today’s contemporary designs.  Known as an infinity edge or vanishing edge, these pools are best suited for a hillside lot with a spectacular view across the water.
  2. Play pools – Also known as “spools” (spa and pool combined), are great for smaller lots, families with children, and someone wanting less maintenance.  Perfect for the “lock and leave” property.
  3. Lap pool – For the athlete or aspiring athlete, the inherit geometry of the long, linear pool is a great fit in modern estates.
  4. Baja Shelf, Alligator Bench, or Tanning Ledge – It has many names, but is essentially a large shallow area big enough to lounge or play in a safe spot next to a deeper pool.  Add a trellis above, and you can relax all day!
  5. Reverse Negative Edge – This is where the waterline and the pool deck are at the same level, giving the visual effect of one plain.   The water can be very close, appearing to touch a building. This is very popular in resort pools.
  6. Beach Entry – A continual slope into the water is both practical and dramatic.
  7. Cantilevered Pools with Glass – If there is no budget, this is the rock star of pool design.  Make it float and then make it see through!
  8. Energy Efficient – There is a new generation of “green” mechanical and electrical equipment: Automatic covers, variable speed pumps, automated cleaning, and LED lighting.
  9. ANYTHING but Plaster & Kool Deck – There is a huge new palette of pool materials from glass tiles, natural stone coping, beadcrete, pebbletec, to black bottoms. Different is better.
  10. The Natural Pool – This is the most interesting development in the pool world. Out with the chlorine, the salt, and even the mineral treatments. Natural pools create an ecosystem of aquatic plants to keep the water clean and purified.

Enjoy the Countdown!

Pool Views

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Two Lee Hutchison Homes for Sale at Desert Mountain!

 

If you have always wanted to be the proud owner of a Lee Hutchison design, there are currently two on the market at Desert Mountain!

 

Desert Mountain

 

Description: All the attributes of a true Lee Hutchison design with the creative interiors of Jan Sanders. When you visit the Desert Mountain home, you will be truly impressed with both the outstanding detail and the setting.

Listed By: Scott Biller at HomeSmart

For more information and pictures please visit: phoenixrealestateseeker.com

 

Desert Mountain II

Description: Striking contemporary mountain ranch style home, nestles high in the Village of Saguaro Forest. Designed by Lee Hutchison and Build by the Phil Nichols Company, this home exhibits the ease of indoor/outdoor living that appeals to Desert Mountain owners. The extensive use of native stone and wood enhance the warmth of this open plan. Stunning golf, mountain, sunset and city views are enjoyed from the multiple patios.

Listed By: The Power of 4

For more information and pictures please visit: tours.tourfactory.com

 

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Top 100 Urban Planning Blogs

Top 100 Architecture blogs

We are proud to announce Urban Design Associates has been name one of the Top 100 Urban Planning Blogs, AND we are still one of the Top 100 Architecture Blogs!

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3 Steps to a Luxurious Indoor-Outdoor Lifestyle

The joys of living in the Southwest come from the dry, warm weather and the opportunity to move life outside for most of the year. Expanding a living area outdoors, no matter the location, helps everyone connect with nature and fully take advantage of a property’s best features.

Step 1: Know your Site

The first step to indoor-outdoor living is to have a comprehensive understanding of the site. Be sure to take both physical elements (i.e., slope of the land, soil composition, and views) and climactic factors (i.e., sun orientation and local breezes) into consideration when creating the perfect flow of space from inside to outside. This will help you utilize all aspects of the land.

Step 2: Create a Transitional Indoor Floor Plan

Open floor plans work best when creating a seamless indoor-outdoor transition. The unhindered view can then be used to draw people outside. To establish a relationship between rooms, the same flooring should be used without interruption. Extending the floor’s surface and ceiling plane outside unifies all living areas and creates a natural flow.

Step 3: Seclude the Outdoor Living Spaces

Outdoor living spaces should be carefully crafted to protect residents from intrusive weather or neighbors, but still feel open and linked to the surroundings. Vegetation and trellises provide privacy without obstructing views, while the calm bubbling of water features cover any unwanted noise pollution. Sitting areas need to feel secluded and have a fireplace, making the space inviting year-round.

There is an art to the perfect indoor-outdoor design, but it can be achieved with careful examination of the environment and the home owner’s daily routine. It doesn’t need to be filled with grandeur or innovative components to be a success. A well-executed house may be stunning, but its daily functionality is what will make it truly a home.

Indoor-Outdoor Living-600

 

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We’re Expanding!

We are pleased to announce our newest Marketing and Administrative Assistant: Caitlin Jackson! Between her seven years of administrative background and her multiple degrees (AA in Fine Art from Scottsdale Community College & BS in Sustainability with a minor in Landscape Architecture from Arizona State University), we know she will be a valuable addition to our team.

If you are wanting to be a part of Urban Design Associates, you’re in luck! We are currently looking to fill a full-time architect/project manager position. The ideal candidate will be a licensed architect or architectural graduate with 10+ years of residential construction field experience. This position is responsible for overall project management for a variety of projects including technical design development, construction document production and coordination, consultant scheduling, and budgeting.

Besides working with an award winning firm, we offer competitive hourly wages and generous benefits including health care and continuing education. We strive to provide a fun yet productive environment for our employees to enhance their professional and personal growth. At UDA, we are more than an architecture firm, we are a family.

uda-team-500

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Prepare to be Summer-ized!

unsplash-sai-kiran-anagani-209542-375It’s official, summer has arrived! Our days of big jackets and snow are behind us, and the season of swimming and barbeques is here. This is great news for everyone but, if you are a homeowner, there are a few more things you need to do besides buy a new bikini. Between the relentless heat and impending monsoon season, you have to ensure your home is in tip-top shape.

1. Test/Update your AC Unit & Thermostat
Now is the time to test your AC unit, since it is better to fix any issues before the temperature sky rockets. If your unit is 10-15 years old, you should consider upgrading to a more energy-efficient, dependable model.

While you are at it, installing a programmable or smart thermostat is also a great way to save energy and money in the long run.

2. Inspect your Roof & Clean/Repair Your Gutters
You don’t want to be hit with surprise leaks or water damage, so take the time to remove debris and fix anything not in working condition.

3. Seal all Windows & Doors
During the winter, it is common for windows and doors to slightly separate from their frames. Sealing these gaps will keep your cool air in and the hot air OUT.

4. Create a Bug Barrier
A lot of bugs hibernate during the winter months, but are quite active in the summer. Besides making sure there aren’t any gaps or cracks for them to enter, consider spraying your outdoor perimeter with a pesticide or natural repellent.

5. Don’t Forget your Garden!
The sun is also tough on your plants, so do everything you can to keep the soil moist. The best option is to install a drip irrigation system on a timer.

6. Prep your Outdoor Living Spaces
It’s not all about staying cool and saving energy. You also have to get ready for all the summer fun you are about to have. Clean your grill, pool and patio furniture so they are ready-to-go for any spontaneous get-togethers. Maybe even add some bright colored pillows or outdoor rug to bump up the décor. Remember to create outdoor storage to stash decor during desert monsoons and dust storms.

7. Remember the Little Things
There are other little things you can do around your house to help you stay cool and reduce your electricity bill. For instance, changing your air filters monthly prevents the restriction of airflow and changing the direction of your fan causes a cool breeze effect. Now might also be a good time to change any of your older bulbs to CFLs. Since they waste less energy on heat, they help keep your home cooler.

8. Contact your HOA
Check with your Home Owner Association about service companies to take care of your property, while you escape the summer heat.

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The Joy is in the Details

Recently we have noticed the trend toward “right-sizing,” “down-sizing,” and “lock and leave” homes has become more the rule.  Many architects and designers would agree that the more challenging, more engaging project, is not necessarily the seemingly complex larger ones.  I LOVE the smaller projects; we call them “jewel box” architecture.  Every detail counts, every inch counts.  They take both restraint and creativity on a different level.

The key to making the small move extraordinary is balance and contrast in geometry, color, or texture.  Below are some images from our smaller, infill projects, mostly remodels that all have an intimate yet glamorous, important feeling.

So do not think, oh this project is too small, or not interesting enough for an architect or a design.  Propose the challenge and I bet you will LOVE what you get in return.

Living Room Fireplace TV kk Courtyard Trellis kk Bliss Private Patio
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Bliss Powder Room 143K7968 143K3480

 

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Lee is an Icon

We always knew it was true, Lee is an Icon, but it was fantastic to be recognized by the Design and Building Industry leaders to make it official.  Sources for Design is a digital magazine making waves in the Arizona Luxury Construction field.  Each issue features 7 industry Icons: project, architect, interior designer, builder, landscape architect, product, and service.  This fourth issue puts Lee in great company with the architectural Icons: Eddie Jones, Vern Swaback, and Michael Johnson.

Lee was recognized for creating a style of architecture all his own “Organic Pueblo,” a term he also coined.  His deep understanding of the Southwest’s light, landforms, and lifestyle show up in every home.  His compassion for his clients and his passion to create beauty continue to manifest in spaces designed for renewal and joyful celebration.

On April 6, 2017 the design community came together for the launch of issue 4 and to congratulate the new class of Icons.  Larry Lake, the magazine’s publisher and local interior designer, created a warm, entertaining evening of indoor/outdoor festivities at Fergusons in Scottsdale.  Each guest was given an autograph book and the perfect “in” to go meet the Icons while collecting signatures.  Urban Design Associates staff, colleagues, past and present clients all gathered to give Lee some extra love for his long standing, successful, and inspiring body of architectural work.  Take a look at Sources for Design Issue 4: http://sourcesfordesign.com/issue4

 lee-icon-290

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Amazing home

April-First-Post

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Spring in the Valley of the Sun

Spring in desert is one of the most beautiful times of the year!  The weather is perfect for outdoor events and the flowers are all in bloom (without the April showers).  We have compiled some of the events we are looking forward to this month.  Take a look and we hope to see you around town.

spring1

spring1

spring1

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Education In Practice

Our team at Urban Design is always looking to further the education of our staff, our clients, and our community on the value that architecture has in our world.  We do this in many ways from staff and client field trips, as a member of ARA (Arizona Residential Architects), sponsoring employee education, in office training, to working with Architecture In Schools, and donating to Free Arts of Arizona.  We truly believe that the creation of beautiful places elevates the human condition and can inspire everyday life. So while staying on top of the newest and greatest architectural products and technologies out there is a top priority, to bring the best to our clients, celebrating the art of architecture and sharing the joy of creating living spaces is our true calling.  We are planning a series of educational community events and polishing up a webinar, keep an eye out for more updates!

education field trip

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