The Ralph Haver Archive

The Triangle Building | Butler Homes and Scottsdale City Hall | 1960

By Ralph Haver AIA

The Triangle Building in Scottsdale by Ralph HaverIn 1960 Dave Friedman, developer of Butler Homes commissioned his friend Ralph Haver AIA to build some two-story office buildings in Scottsdale. One was the western vernacular yet glassy Pima Plaza, and the other would become the Butler Homes offices, with space leased to Scottsdale City Hall, including the Mayor’s office. The Triangle Building in Scottsdale by Ralph HaverWith its prominent frontage along Indian School Road, the deeply-shaded low-slung office earned the nickname “The Triangle Building”. The Triangle Building in Scottsdale by Ralph HaverThe building’s provenance got lost in the sands of time as a new City Hall was designed and built by one of Haver's protegées Bennie Gonzales in 1968. Butler eventually moved on, too.

We’d long believed and also heard that the Triangle Building was a Haver, just never were able to confirm it until recently. Sometimes the threat of demolition kicks research up into high gear. As each year passes more sources get archived online to help, so it never hurts to take a second look.

When we caught wind that a developer was going to demolish the Triangle this year, we redoubled our efforts and worked with a cohort of historians and activists to finally piece the story together. Due to address numbering system changes over the years, researching by address was brutal. But finally, at last, the truth was revealed. 

Gentle intervention with the developer from multiple angles resulted in a positive outcome. Now the current project team is proposing a mixed-use development that actively restores and adapts this iconic 1962 Haver design. We’re glad to see this building saved!

Friedman and Haver’s business relationship is significant: other projects they worked on together include the Friedman Office Building (now Red Modern Furniture), Villa Monterrey (now a historic neighborhood in Scottsdale) and the single family homes of Starlite Vista in northwest central Phoenix. The building also shares some formal qualities with Haver's two-story Entz-White Lumber of 1953, long demolished.

Photos ©2020 Scott Sandler and Modern Phoenix LLC
Vintage Photo: Scottsdale Historical Society
The Ralph Haver Archive