Homeowners open doors to help revitalize south Scottsdale

(photo by InnovationsMOD)

(photo by InnovationsMOD)

Benevolent homeowners are preparing to open their doors for the second annual Southern Scottsdale Home Tour, InnovationsMOD, an event aiming to raise funds for Coronado High School. The tour is to feature some of the most innovative housing selections south Scottsdale has to offer.

Participants are to be treated to a variety of homes and will also have the opportunity to talk to some of the craftsperson’s about their unique techniques and one-of-a-kind designs.

The home tour is a way to highlight the positive revitalization momentum that is building in southern Scottsdale, according to Producer Dana Close.

The tour will be from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 10. Registration begins at 10:30 a.m. at 77 on the Park apartments, 1350 N. 77th St. Cost is $25 per person.

“The Home Tour is an event that allows people to experience the charm, character and creativity as well as business and lifestyle opportunities that exist in this wonderful area of Scottsdale,” said Ms. Close in a Jan. 2 e-mailed response to questions.

Stretching from the Sherwood Heights neighborhood on the west to the Village Grove neighborhood on the east, there are eight mid-century to contemporary modern homes on the tour. A new addition to the tour will be three apartments: 77 on the Park, San Travesia on McDowell Road, and The Moderne near the Scottsdale Fashion Square.

In total, there will be 11 places for people to see that will give them a cross-section of what is called “creative living” according to Ms. Close.

Launched in 2014, the tour is a way to change the misconceptions some people may have had about southern Scottsdale, said Ms. Close.

“Over the past 20 years as the city expanded to the north, the southern area of our city, which is the ‘original’ part of Scottsdale, was neglected,” said Ms. Close.

“During these past three years, the collaborative efforts of the city, businesses and our neighborhoods to revitalize Southern Scottsdale has really been paying off. I’m happy to say our home tour has become part of the revitalization story.”

(Graph by Melissa Fittro)

(Graph by Melissa Fittro)

Putting local schools on an even playing field

Editor’s note: Read a Write-to-Reply submission on the topic of tax credit donations and what they can and cannot be use for. Go here.

Coronado High School receives fewer tax donations than any other Scottsdale Unified School District high school, according to Ms. Close.

Compared to Arcadia High School and Saguaro High School, Coronado has the highest percentage of students receiving free and reduced lunches, and the lowest amount of tax revenue income per student.

In addition, Coronado holds a “C” grade rating, while Arcadia and Saguaro hold an “A” rating.

“At the beginning of the school year, there was an event at Coronado High School in which local community and business leaders, city and district officials, along with Coronado student leaders and some staff engaged with each other to learn more about how we can work together to strengthen our school and community,” said Coronado High School Principal Alyssa Tarkington in a Jan. 6 written response. “The Home Tour collaboration is one of many opportunities that has evolved as a result of that event.”

Ms. Tarkington said the home tour is just one way the community assists the school.

“We came up with the idea of a percentage of ticket sales going back to Coronado High Schools because they take in less tax donations than any of the other SUSD high schools,” said Ms. Close. “Our goal is to link community activities that benefit our neighborhoods, as well as our schools and local businesses for greater impact.”

Ms. Close says revitalizing southern Scottsdale isn’t only about economic development, but it also stands for improving the neighborhoods and parks as well.

“We think improving our southern Scottsdale schools is also an important part of the revitalization equation,” Ms. Close said.

With the help of Councilwoman Virginia Korte, the tour became involved with Coronado’s High School’s Jobs for Arizona Graduate’s program.

“We are giving the 40 students who participate in the program the opportunity to be involved in the home tour as a way of giving them a ‘hands on’ experience of what it takes to produce an event of this magnitude,” said Ms. Close.

“As long as our southern Scottsdale schools depend on outside resources to fund programs, we will need to think creatively as a community in order to put our schools on an even playing field.”

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(Photo by InnovationsMOD)

Hidden gems in south Scottsdale

Architect Kevin Callahan is one homeowner opening his doors for guests next weekend.

“Our home — we’ve been here for three years — was an original Haver home until 2005 when a French architect bought it and renovated the interior, added a courtyard and other expansions,” said Mr. Callahan in a Jan. 5 phone interview. “When we purchased it, we added on an architectural studio.”

Ralph Haver was a mid-century architect in the 1940s and 1950s while he was a contemporary of Frank Lloyd Wright, Mr. Callahan stated.

“Essentially, he did a blue collar version of modern architecture,” said Mr. Callahan. “This whole neighborhood, Town and Country in Scottsdale, is protected specifically because of Ralph Haver.”

Mr. Callahan said he enjoys participating in the home tours because he likes to inspire others, showing how renovation to these unique houses while respecting its original charm can be done. Out of about 64 homes total, only a handful have been renovated he said.

“It’s just helpful for people to see what people can do with these homes,” Mr. Callahan said. “Original Ralph Haver is what young kids want again — it’s mid-century modern.”

According to ModernPhoenix.net, Mr. Haver used the less-is-more strategy in creating stripped-down contemporary ranch homes that took western ranch utility and adapted its principals to modern forms.

“His relentless attention to designing single-family custom homes was a steady artistic outlet for decades, resulting in some of the most dearly loved and well-published custom homes the Valley of the Sun has ever seen,” the website stated.

For more information on the InnovationsMOD, the Southern Scottsdale Home Tour, or to purchase tickets, visit http://www.innovationsmod.com.

(photo by InnovationsMOD)

(photo by InnovationsMOD)

Northeast Valley News Services Editor Melissa Fittro can be e-mailed at mfittro@newszap.com or can be followed on Twitter at twitter.com/melissafittro.

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