Developers want tower to transform Phoenix skyline


by Jared Dillingham

Bio | Email | Follow: @JaredDillingham

Posted on December 20, 2012 at 9:40 PM

Updated Friday, Dec 21 at 7:39 AM

PHOENIX -- An international team of developers and designers is working to build a new iconic landmark in downtown Phoenix.

Novawest, LLC worked with the Bjarke Ingles Group of Denmark to create plans for what is currently known as the Phoenix Tower.

The roughly 40-story tower would be built at the base of the Arizona Science Center.

"We've gotten a great response from the Science Center, and most everyone we've worked with at the city is excited about the idea," said developer Jay Thorne of Novawest.

Glass elevators would bring visitors up to several floors of indoor and outdoor observation decks, a restaurant, a bar, and possibly a museum and art gallery.

"People who live here might think, 'There's not much to see, but people climb Camelback to get views of the Valley.' You'll get a view like no other,'' Thorne told 3TV Thursday.

Thorne says financing the project is a 'challenge,' but he is confidently working to convince private investors that the Tower could turn a profit.

The Tower is being compared to the Seattle Space Needle, and the St. Louis Arch.

"We do lack an iconic architectural statement downtown," said Thorne.

He's heard the Tower's design described as a 'golf ball on a tee,' a 'Google map pin,' and a honey-dipper.

After sunset, the Tower's LED lighting would change colors with seasons, events, and holidays.

Developers would like the Tower to open by the the time the Valley hosts the Superbowl in February of 2015. With that timeline, they would have to break ground by August of 2013.