Painted Desert Visitor Center

About Painted Desert Visitor Center, Petrified Forest National Park

The Painted Desert Community Complex is the administrative center of Petrified Forest National Park. The community center includes administrative facilities, utility structures and National Park Service employee housing, planned by architects Richard Neutra and Robert Alexander as part of the Mission 66 park facilities improvement program. Work on the community began in 1961 and was completed by 1965. The complex contrasts with earlier Park Service architecture that sought to blend with the environment. The Painted Desert community used straight manufactured materials that deliberately draw a contrast with the natural environment. The most significant building is the Painted Desert Visitor Center, designed as a severely modernist structure that includes administrative offices., a visitor center, an auditorium, a clinic and staff apartments. Other structures include a community center, school and a Fred Harvey Company concession building. Neutra and Alexander paid particular attention to the division of the complex into public and private areas, using low walls to divide the Park Service service area from the central zone, and setting the inward-facing residential areas at a distance. Pedestrian circulation paths are used as defining organizing elements. The original landscape design used non-native plants that required regular watering. Removal of irrigation caused these plants to die, altering the landscape.

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Overview of Painted Desert Visitor Center

Home to Painted Desert Visitor Center is the city of Petrified Forest National Park in the country of United States. On your trip to Petrified Forest National Park, you can consider a quick visit to Painted Desert Visitor Center. Use this comprehensive guide to plan your visit to Painted Desert Visitor Center and you'll thank us later!

More about Petrified Forest National Park

Create a customized plan for your visit using the Petrified Forest National Park trip planner. You can use ready templates or start from scratch for the same.

There are plenty of ready-to-book Petrified Forest National Park vacation packages available that will cover the major attractions, accommodation concerns including the prime one like how to reach Petrified Forest National Park.

Address: 1 Park Rd, Petrified Forest National Park, AZ 86028, USA

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Timings: 08:00 am - 05:00 pm Details

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Share your experience - Rate Painted Desert Visitor Center, Petrified Forest National Park

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  • Hidden gem of a cafe along I-40. Great local food (Navajo tacos, squash soup, vegetarian options) and much better place to stop than all those noisy truck stops. Very reasonable prices for food. Visitor center has some displays for the kids and it's a nice quiet place for a rest stop before getting back on the road or entering the park. Even with no intent of entering the park, this is a better rest stop than almost anything between Flagstaff and Albuquerque. Give it a try.

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  • More fun than a box of bunnies! The rangers were really nice (and chased us down when our debit card was misplaced!!) the road wasn't too crowded even on a holiday. The only thing is that I was kind of bored and THEN we got to all the petrified trees!??! I should have looked at the map more so my expectations were more clear.

  • Expensive food (7 dollar for a burger without any fries or drinks) rude staff and not even locks on the toilets!

  • Our 10 year old boys loved our visit. We didn't do the long hiker, but they want to come back when the weather is cooler. We were there in July and it was hot. Know that there are no trees to duck under for shade, from the Painted Desert south to the Petrified Forest.

  • Alot of interesting exhibits and information on the park definitely stop here first before entering the park

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