Capitol Mall


AIA Arizona, a state component of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), in cooperation with its colleagues at the Arizona Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects (AzASLA), has recently published a Centennial Plan and Vision for the Arizona State Capitol.

Building upon past research and plans for improvements of the state capitol complex and capitol mall developed in collaboration with the Arizona State University College of Design, the Centennial Plan and Vision proposes changes and upgrades to the state capitol complex and capitol mall that can be implemented in time to showcase the celebration of Arizona’s Centennial, which begins in February 2011. In addition, it proposes a bold, long-term vision for the area for 2020 and beyond.

Plans for the arrival of the Centennial are focused around a renovated historic statehouse that becomes more integrated into the daily operation of state governance, bringing together officials from all three branches of government and from both sides of the political aisle under one roof. An executive office for the governor, caucus rooms for members of the legislature and improvements to the existing museum and building infrastructure are some of the proposed ideas for the historic building.

Also included in the Centennial plan is a concept for a redesigned Wesley Bolin Plaza and capitol grounds and a new civic space on the capitol’s western frontage. Together, these improvements will create a more cohesive state capitol complex, reflect the state’s history and culture, and respect the original axial plan centered along Washington Street to focus views onto the historic copper dome. Some ideas include increased shade, relocation of existing parking to off-site locations and the development of a subterranean capitol complex forecourt that connects the two chambers of the state legislature.

The 2020 vision proposes long-term ideas to help foster an inclusive revitalization and redevelopment that will establish Phoenix as a national exemplar of the 21st-century capital city. These ideas include an urban reforestation of the mall, improved transit opportunities and vehicular treatments, comprehensive sustainability improvements to existing structures, improved connections and amenities for existing neighborhoods and encouragement of a major private investment in housing and other neighborhood services.

The AIA Arizona and AzASLA team continues to engage different departments within the city and state governments and local business and neighborhood advocacy groups on the effort. The governor’s Arizona Centennial Commission has recently designated the Plan and Vision as a Signature Project, and the Legislative Governmental Mall Commission has given it a “Favorable Review.” The team is also working to adopt a plan of action for the successful implementation of projects proposed in the Centennial Plan and Vision. To view the Centennial Plan and Vision, click here.

Contact Patrick Panetta, AIA, for further questions about this project by e-mail (

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The American Institute of Architects Arizona Component is a one-stop resource for members of the media who are seeking architecture and design contacts for interviews, statistical data and information about the profession within the State of Arizona.

Please direct all media inquiries to:
Diana Smith
Director of Local Chapters
P: 602-252-4200
F: 602-273-6814

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