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  UNLV Libraries -> Architecture Studies Library-> Collections -> Las Vegas Guides and Collections -> Las Vegas driving tours (self guided)

Self-guided tour #4: West Las Vegas
1. Alexander Dawson School at Rainbow Mountain
Back to self-guided tours of Las Vegas
Map for West Las Vegas self-guided tour
2. Sahara West Library and Museum
3. KNPR Donald W. Reynolds Broadcast Center
4. CCSN West Charleston Campus
5. CCSN Dental Residency Addition
6. West Charleston Library
7. Statue of Liberty at Babe's Italian Ices
8. Helen Meyer Community Center
9. Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles, West Flamingo Office
Print driving tour pamphlet: west04.doc Note: to print file choose landscape orientation




1. Alexander Dawson School at Rainbow Mountain
Architect(s): KGA Architecture
Address: 10845 W. Desert Inn Rd.
Year: 2000

The concept driving this private school located on a 35-acre site was to create an environment in which the buildings and grounds themselves could be used as teaching tools. The school design offers a safe, friendly, and dynamic environment that encourages critical thinking. Four main buildings contain separate spaces for different age groups and a Demonstration Garden is integrated throughout the campus. The buildings are inspired by natural forms, feature windows set at low heights for children to easily look out, and some windows have a periscope system of mirrors that allow students to view the neighboring mountains. This project won two NAIOP Awards in 2001 and a 2003 AIA Nevada Merit award in the Built category.

Photo provided by Liz Fuentes (July 2003).


Alexander Dawson School at Rainbow Mountain

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2. Sahara West Library and Museum
Architect(s): Meyer, Scherer & Rockcastle and Tate & Snyder Architects (now Tate Snyder Kimsey Architects)
Address: 9600 W. Sahara Ave.
Year: 1996

This 119,000 square-foot library is the third in a series of libraries designed by high-profile architects commissioned by the Library District. The $15 million building has a distinctive entrance façade that faces away from busy Sahara Avenue. The concrete and metal structure features many expressionist forms and volumes. A tapered cylinder contains the children's reading room on the second floor and a serene, minimalist alcove with a single bench. The main reading area features natural daylight from the south-facing glazing but shading devices still offer protection from the summer sun. The facility features a fine arts museum operated by the Las Vegas Arts Museum, multiple meeting and conference rooms, a bookstore, and a computer center.

Photo provided by Liz Fuentes (July 2003).




Sahara West Library and Museum

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3. KNPR Donald W. Reynolds Broadcast Center
Architect(s): RAFI
Address: 1289 S. Torrey Pines Dr.
Year: 1998

This 17,000 square-foot facility features a broadcast and recording center that is fully operational 24 hours a day and seven days a week, a hands-on classroom for teaching students, and administrative office for Nevada Public Radio. Theater marquee-style entrances with signage make reference to radio stations of the past and the fuchsia, yellow, blue, and purple exterior accent colors complement the color scheme of the neighboring CCSN West Charleston Campus. This is the only radio facility in Nevada that is capable of broadcasting throughout the world.

 

Photo provided by Liz Fuentes (July 2003).


KNPR Donald W. Reynolds Broadcast Center

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4. CCSN West Charleston Campus
Architect(s): RAFI
Address: 6375 W. Charleston Blvd.
Year: 1996, 1999

This colorful 80-acre campus features the Computer Learning Center, Academics and Student Services Building, and campus plaza with abstract art, seating, and landscaping. The fuchsia, yellow, blue, purple, and red colors are intended to represent colors found in the desert flora, mountains, and sunsets. Another reason for the colorful EIFS exteriors was to help create an identity recognized citywide for the Community College. The two-story Academic Building, which cost $10 million, received a 1996 Gold Nugget Award. The four-story Academics and Student Services Building, which cost $17 million, received a 2000 Gold Nugget Award.

 

Photo provided by Liz Fuentes (July 2003).

 


CCSN West Charleston Campus

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5. CCSN Dental Residency Addition
Architect(s): Carpenter Sellers Associates
Address: 6375 W. Charleston Blvd.
Year: 1999

This project consisted of a 13,105 square-foot addition to an existing building and the remodel of 2,745 square feet of space within the latter. Since the Community College's dental hygiene program is housed within the building, its design inspiration is loosely based on the human mouth. A wavy metal tongue-like structure marks the entrance and vertical slabs of stone separated by narrow windows resemble teeth. Even though the building has its own distinct character, it responds to the surrounding buildings with its use of the bright accent colors, similarly styled shading devices, and material choices. The addition integrates seamlessly into the campus master plan.

Photo provided by Liz Fuentes (July 2003).



CCSN Dental Residency Addition


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6. West Charleston Library
Architect(s): Welles Pugsley Architects
Address: 6301 W. Charleston Blvd.
Year: 1993

This 39,000 square-foot branch library is located within the West Charleston Community College master plan. The building features two main entrances: one facing east for the visiting public and one facing the community college on the west side. Both entrances feature a series of concentric walls that vary in height. The building responds to the harsh desert conditions by providing no windows on the west side and only small openings on the south. Most of the daylight is provided by the building's north-facing windows. This library also features a small theater with stage and an art gallery.


Photo provided by Liz Fuentes (July 2003).



West Charleston Library


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7. Statue of Liberty at Babe's Italian Ices
Sculptor: Gene White
Address: 4211 W. Sahara Ave.
Year: 1981

This small replica for the Liberty Square shopping plaza has been a Las Vegas landmark for more than twenty years. At the base of the Statue of Liberty is a shaved ice stand. This older statue has been overshadowed in recent years by the New York New York's taller and newer version. Although themed architecture is certainly not new to the city, seldom is this kind of iconography seen in the average strip mall. A more famous example of architecture acting as sculptural/iconographic marker is the Tail-o'-the Pup, a popular hotdog stand in Los Angeles.

 



Photo provided by Liz Fuentes (July 2003).



Statue of Liberty at Babe's Italian Ices

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8. Helen Meyer Community Center
Architect(s): Lucchesi Galati Architects
Address: 4525 New Forest Ave.
Year: 1996

Located in the community of Spring Valley, this 6,000 square-foot community center provides space for an arts and crafts studio, ceramics studio, game room, and a kitchen. The facility features an active learning program for developing children's social and learning skills. Traveling to the center is an interesting experience because New Forest Avenue is a winding street flanked by eight-foot-tall block walls with no houses fronting it. After navigating through the neighborhood, the colorful façade of the community center and expanse of grass greet visitors.



Photo provided by Liz Fuentes (July 2003).

 


Helen Meyer Community Center


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9. Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles, West Flamingo Office
Architect(s): HSA Architects, Inc.
Address: 8250 W. Flamingo Rd.
Year: 1994

The attention-grabbing design of this DMV office reinforces the importance of the car in Las Vegas. Due to the diverse and large amount of services provided within the building, the space organization and circulation pattern was intentionally designed to be similar to that of a retail mall. The building materials are two-tone concrete block in both rough and smooth textures, metal cladding, and masonry walls. Surrounding a fan-shaped plaza that provides some seating for visitors, the buildings feature roof overhangs on the southern exposure to protect glazing from the sun and a glazed wall facing the north.


Photo provided by Liz Fuentes (July 2003).

 


Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles, West Flamingo Office


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Sources:
Anderton, Frances, and John Chase. Las Vegas:A Guide to Recent Architecture. London: Ellipsis London Limited, 1997.
Las Vegas American Institute of Architects Design Awards Archives
Nicoletta, Julie. Buildings of Nevada. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000.

© UNLV ASL
Tour pamphlets prepared May, 2003 by Liz Fuentes, UNLV School of Architecture Graduate Student
Revised 6/04 by Ernie Podaca, UNLV School of Architecture Graduate Student

 





Monday, 17-Dec-2012 10:50:37 PST