July 11, 2004
Recycled has a whole new meaning for the Perry family.
Their Queen Creek home was built and designed using material from an old Savco truck stop and hotel that stood on the northwest corner of 56th Street and Chandler Boulevard in Chandler.
The two-story, 4,500-square-foot home has a massive structural steel roof and uses large I-beams from the building. The peak of the ceiling is 72 feet high.
Original steel stairs from the truck stop lead up to the second floor, where a catwalk runs between the master bedroom and an office. Beyond the work room is an observation tower for the kids with a steel ladder bolted to the floor and the wall for access.
Complementing the recycled items from the truck stop are antiques and garage sale and consignment store finds. Those include an 1800s barber chair, a Victrola and an antique spinning wheel.
"It is a very cool house," Debbie Perry said. "I’m just so pleased that it’s a warm house."
Debbie Perry, 50, lives in the home with her husband Mike, 49, and their two children, 17-year-old Katie and 13-year-old Bryan.
Mike Perry, an architect, said he has always had an interest in adapting a home using materials from an older building.
After coming across the "for sale" sign in front of the truck stop, Perry called the owner and asked if he could buy the building.
After opening the weldedshut doors, the family found 16 hotel rooms filled with furniture and a floor-to-ceiling beehive an exterminator told them was one of the biggest he had ever seen.
The Perrys numbered the beams and columns they wanted to keep and had the building demolished.
The family’s dream home is built on a 3 1/3-acre lot that backs up to the San Tan Mountains. The site was chosen for the rural setting and the proximity to Debbie Perry’s parents. Ron and Donnis Hunkler live next door in their own design of a pyramid-shaped home.
"We needed this kind of setting for this kind of house," said Mike Perry, an award-winning architect with Whitneybell Architects in Phoenix.