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Great Sonoran Desert Design Concepts

Where is the full policy located?Pyramid_SonoranDesertDGs

  • The General Plan may be viewed at the Planning and Design Library at the Community Design Studio, 7506 E Indian School Road.

What is it?

Great Sonoran Desert Design Concepts are ideas and recommendations based on the concept of achieving minimum visual impact of the built environment on the natural desert setting. They were created by a group of citizens and presnted to the City for further action/implementation.

Where does it apply?

All development in the Sonoran Desert Environment generally defined by the Environmentally Sensitive Land Ordinance Area designation: North of the APS Power Corridor, West of Pima, and Norht of the CAP Canal east of Pima

Who needs to use it?

All participants in the development process, including citizens, policy makers, design professionals, and developers.

Why was it developed?

The recommendations were developed to enhance building quality while respecting the unique Sonoran Desert.

Key Points:

  1. Respect, protect, and conserve the special features of the environment.
  2. Blend with the natural shape and texture of the land.
  3. Natural desert landscaping should be used as much as possible.
  4. Design spaces that extend to the outdoors.
  5. Maintain starry nights and dark skies with limited lighting.
  6. Provide for meaningful natural desert open space.
  7. All sides of buildings should be considered part of the character of the area.
  8. Use colors and materials that blend into the natural setting.
  9. Emulate our rich and diverse southwestern architectural heritage.

References and related documents:

Download printable Sonoran Desert Policy Card (pdf / 695 kb / 1 pg)

9/30/03