Eagles Nest Architecture Series: Pueblo – An Ancient Style Synonymous with the Southwest.

Presented by: Eagles Nest Architectural Committee

There is no architectural style more thought of as quintessential to the southwest, particularly New Mexico and Arizona, than Pueblo.  It’s thick, adobe walls and unadorned style have influenced later southwestern styles incorporating local materials, features and methods better suited to the climate.

Pueblo Architecture

Pueblo architecture is very old and evolved from the cliff dwellings of the Anasazis around 1150. Traditional pueblo construction used stones or adobe bricks made from clay and water in multi-storied buildings surrounding an open plaza.  Structurally, this method predated modern light-weight building frame construction, so buildings resembled stepped, segmented structures with massive walls that not only supported the loads of masonry walls above, but also provided effective shelter from the heat.  Roofs were always flat supported by log timbers (known as “vigas”) and covered with twigs, grass and mud.  Windows were covered with “sombrajes,” screen panels made from gathered branches and twigs.

Pueblo Architecture

Pueblo style architecture today imitates the appearance of traditional adobe construction, though more modern materials such as rounded brick, stacked stone or stucco painted in earth tones are often used in place of adobe.  Walls are thick with small deep-set windows, rounded corners, and irregular parapets.  Stepped massing of multistory buildings common to Pueblo architecture is a natural fit for hillside terrain.  Roofs are always flat, and a common feature is the use of projecting wooden roof beams (vigas).  Pueblo Revival style of the late 19th and early 20th centuries incorporated Spanish elements of spacious covered porches with clay tile roofs supported by log timbers and larger windows.

Pueblo Revival Home

Pueblo Revival Home – Designer:  Urban Design Associates

 It is easy to see how Pueblo style architecture is easily adapted to the Eagles Nest Design Guidelines with its massing, colors and textures well suited for the desert hillsides of the community; and the historic context rooted in many southwestern styles is well suited to the theme and vision of Eagles Nest.