Intelligent Machines

Explore Paolo Soleri's Urban Laboratory in the Arizona Desert

An architect’s quixotic but enduring quest to change the way we live.

Slideshow: A panoramic view of Arcosanti, a model town in the high desert of central Arizona conceived by architect Paolo Soleri as a laboratory for experiments in sustainable urban living. The visitors’ center (far left) includes a café and a gallery. A pair of apses (left) are the site of ceramic and bronze bell production. Vaults at the top of the mesa serve as a public plaza for the community. The building overlooking the pool (far right) houses administrative offices, a drafting studio, and a library.
Slideshow: The sun sets on Arcosanti in the late 1970s.
Slideshow: Paolo Soleri speaks to the community in the mid-1970s.
Slideshow: Arcosanti is built upon a bluff overlooking the Agua Fria River. This 1975 photograph shows the progress made at the site since construction began five years earlier.
Slideshow: A recent view of Arcosanti from the air.

Uh oh–you've read all five of your free articles for this month.

Insider Premium

$179.95/yr US PRICE

More from Intelligent Machines

Artificial intelligence and robots are transforming how we work and live.

Want more award-winning journalism? Subscribe to Insider Premium.

  • Insider Premium {! insider.prices.premium !}*

    {! insider.display.menuOptionsLabel !}

    Our award winning magazine, unlimited access to our story archive, special discounts to MIT Technology Review Events, and exclusive content.

    See details+

    What's Included

    Bimonthly home delivery and unlimited 24/7 access to MIT Technology Review’s website.

    The Download. Our daily newsletter of what's important in technology and innovation.

    Access to the Magazine archive. Over 24,000 articles going back to 1899 at your fingertips.

    Special Discounts to select partner offerings

    Discount to MIT Technology Review events

    Ad-free web experience

    First Look. Exclusive early access to stories.

    Insider Conversations. Join in and ask questions as our editors talk to innovators from around the world.

You've read of free articles this month.