debartolo architects

debartolo architects

Phoenix, AZ



AIR GUITAR is a new retail micro market concept designed for a heavily-trafficked suburban corner in Gilbert, Arizona. The new building is the response to the challenge to design a modern day bodega. This reborn typology seeks to provide a combination of everyday and luxury goods with efficient service from an innovative environment that is filled with daylight and encourages people to linger.

To accomplish the clients’ vision, the studio of debartolo architects began by imagining the site populated with grid of native desert trees, and carved out space for a simple building. The form of the building was defined by the enclosed service spaces on both sides of an open light filled rectangle of space open to the north and south.

Responding to the need for shade in the desert, the architects organized the spaces under a large roof structure of perforated metal cladding that extends far beyond the interior conditioned space. This allows for a welcoming outdoor environment that creates shade around the building perimeter. Beneath this pavilion roof, the service bays bracket the public space and protect the interior from the harsh west and east solar orientation. 

The perforated metal of the pavilion roof that creates generous shade outside, becomes a means of attenuating acoustics on the interior. Full-height glass on the north and south create a light-filled and uplifting space with low merchandise shelving to enhance the sense of openness. Polished concrete, raw steel, and solid surfacing provide a simple palette of materials to the life of the public space. 

On the exterior, standing seam metal cladding responds to the clients’ vision of a sustainable building that requires minimal maintenance. An inspired seam pattern brings a pedestrian scale to the exterior facade while the transparent interior communicates an invitation to passers by.

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Status: Built
Location: Gilbert, AZ, US
Firm Role: Architect
Additional Credits: contractor: Robert E Porter Construction