Tuesday, April 28, 2009

EMPS: Tucson Modern

For Ellipsis Monday Photo Shoot #35: Government Buildings, Carly is asking to see both government buildings found locally and and any interesting surrounding features. In the past I've showed you mostly older government buildings downtown, ranging from the historic rail depot to the beautifully tiled old Pima County Courthouse.

From Tucson Modern

But for this shoot, I thought immediately of this rather bizarre modern building, built in 2003. This is the Patrick K. Hardesty Midtown Multi-Service Center, a partially solar-powered building at 22nd and Alvernon in Tucson, AZ. The building is named for a fallen police officer, and houses a police substation as well as Tucson Water.

I passed this building every day as if was being built, on my way to work at Worldwide Travel. It replaced a mostly-empty lot, which had been a recycling drop-off and had also been the site of rallies, parades, and small gatherings of homeless people. These days I still pass it every day, because it's just over a mile from the dog park.

It's a very odd-looking building, and pretty much impossible to photograph all at once. Bits of it remind me of the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright, but I suppose it's really industrial modern.

There was a kid riding a scooter around the property as I photographed it, and I did not completely avoid photographing him; he's in two of my shots, in the distance (and I smudged his tiny image for further privacy). After that he came up to me and asked what I was photographing.

"The building, basically," I said.


"It's a really interesting-looking building, and I've been driving past it for years," I told him. "I thought it would be fun to photograph."

"But you can't photograph the whole building," he said.

"No, but I got a bunch of nice pictures of bits of it from different angles," I said.

"Do you like the building?"

That's a question I've been asking myself for years. "I can't decide if I like it or not," I told him. "I like the shape of it. I just don't like the colors, all that reddish brown."

"It doesn't go with the park, does it?" he said.

"No, it doesn't," I agreed.

The building is adjacent to Randolph Park, and the Reid Park / Randolph Park jogging track goes past the north end of it.

There is a minimal but rather nice bit of desert landscaping next to the street (Alvernon). Across the street is a rather colorful gas station.

The dogs were only minimally interested in the property, but they're pretty much always patient with my explorations. From here we went on to another, very different government-owned building - but I'll save that for my next entry.



Carly said...

Hi Karen

What a beautiful, modern building! I really like it's lines and the little bridge. Nice.


Suzanne R said...

That is a very interesting building. Each shot seems as if it could be of a completely separate edifice. I'm glad the dogs seemed interested. ;-)

Jama said...

What an interesting building!