When Is the Best Time
The best time to visit Arcosanti is early to mid-week, earlier in the day, fewer visitors, slightly cooler temps. Easier to photograph and those that live at the site will be more energized to share stories.
Arcosanti is an experimental town in the desert of Arizona, built to embody Paolo Soleri’s concept of arcology – the fusion of architecture with ecology. In addition to hypothesising gigantic city size structures, he designed projects including the ‘Hyper Building’ and ‘Hexadredon’.
In my experience, traveling to places classified as “experimental”, typically don’t disappoint. Like traveling through someones thoughts, you can roam the grounds seeing structures that boast their own unique form.
If you have interest in at least one of the following, you’ll discover some aspect that appeals to you; history, philosophy, architecture, communes, outsider art, landscaping, metal works, or ceramics.
The site allows for both guided and self-guided tours. Because it is an active, self-sustaining community, it is best to enter the space realizing the grounds are their home. There is a gallery, bakery, and cafe on the premises.
Here is a quote by Soleri that brings to life the odd but still inspiring ideas of the architect.
“A process architecture, space organizing itself, aware and use of the sun presence, in moving incrementally (the six phases) into higher degrees of complexity, the urbanizing process.
Each apse exedra leaf “knows” more than the preceding, not out of magic, but out of experience (of the preceding). The enriching experience of a growing urban effect. It is the prototypical instrument adding accesses to the richer sound which the players, residents and guest, might want to employ while growing from 100 to 5000 or so.” —Paolo Soleri
For more information consider taking a look at their website, there you will see what they call Arcosanti 5,000 – their vision for the future.
Visiting hours are 9am – 5pm, 7 days a week.
Arcosanti is closed on major holidays (New Year’s Day, Easter Sunday, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day)