Travel Information NOIRLab Headquarters

How to reach NOIRLab HQ, Tucson, Arizona


Noirlab Headquarters - Tucson, Arizona

Accommodation Tucson

NOIRLab does not maintain apartments in Tucson. The Kitt Peak Support Office may be able to suggest apartments for long-term visitors (visitors who need lodging by the month or longer). For shorter stays, the Kitt Peak Support Office can suggest local hotels.

Example hotels in Tucson:

  • Tucson Marriott University Park
  • Sonesta ES Suites Tucson

Bellina Lopez, Observer Support, Kitt Peak
+1-520-318-8603, .

Food Tucson

Several eating places are within walking distance of the Tucson office.

Sheraton Four Points Hotel - 1900 E. Speedway Blvd.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner.
(6:30 am-10:00 pm)

Dirtbag's - 1800 E. Speedway Blvd.
Hamburgers, sandwiches, salads.
(11:00 am - 1:00 am, M-Sat; Noon-1:00 am Sun.)

Subway - 1927 E. Speedway Blvd.
Sandwiches, salads, breakfast
(12:00am - 12:00am M-Sun)

McDonald's - 1711 E. Speedway Blvd.
Just what you've come to know and love.
(7:00 am - Midnight)

University of Arizona Student Union - on the campus mall

Several eating places including a cafeteria.
(7:00 am - 9:30 pm)
Innumerable places west and south of the University, on Park Avenue, University Blvd., and 6th Street.

Taco Bell - corner of Speedway & Campbell
Mexican food via quick service.
(9:00 am - Midnight)

Other good restaurants in Tucson are Blue Willow Restaurant and the Grill at Hacienda del Sol

7-Eleven - 1750 E. Speedway Blvd.
Corner of Speedway & Martin Ave.
(Open 24 hours a day)


Tucson enjoys more sunshine than any other city in the United States. Summer temperatures range from average highs of 98.3 degrees F to average lows of 69.6 degrees F . Average winter temperatures range from 65.3 to lows of 37.6 degrees F. The lifestyle is free and easy, and casual clothing is acceptable most everywhere. In the winter, a light coat or jacket will usually suffice. If you plan to enjoy the Arizona sun, we recommend you use sunscreen for your safety.


The Arizona Stagecoach (office in the airport terminal, phone  +1-520-889-1000) is the most economical commercial transportation between the airport and our Tucson headquarters. Their van currently meets all incoming flights and can arrive at the downtown office in approximately 40 minutes.

Taxicab service (unregulated) to and from the airport is also available, with shorter travel time (20 minutes), and greater cost (from $11.00-$20.00). A note of caution: For all taxicabs, remind the driver to turn on the meter, since he may "forget," and propose a flat rate, which is higher than the metered rate.

The Tucson city bus system is called Sun Tran. City bus schedules are located in the lobby of the Headquarters Building, and a map of the entire city bus system is located in the hallway of the Employees' Lounge. The bus is fairly convenient to most major shopping areas or hotels, and the one-way cash fare is $1.75 (exact change only). Transfers to connecting buses are free with a SunGO card. If you have any questions about catching the bus or schedules, please call Sun Tran at +1-520-792-9222.

Use of Tucson Facilities and Key Cards to the Tucson Office Building

The Tucson facilities are staffed from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday-Friday. If you need assistance upon your arrival, please check in with the Kitt Peak Support Office (+1-520-318-8279, Room 172). If you are arriving at the Tucson Office after-hours or on a weekend or holiday and need to get into the building, this is how to do it: In advance, notify the Kitt Peak Support Office (+1-520-318-8279) of your approximate arrival time. Security will not let you into the building unless advance notification has been received. At the Cherry Avenue (west) entrance of NOIRLab HQ, you will find a telephone handset located inside the gray metal box to the right of the front double doors to call the security officer. Instructions for its use are posted inside it. The Security Officer will let you into the building after presenting your identification. Alternatively, from an outside line you can call the Security Officer directly at  +1-520-312-4067. You can leave your telephone number for the person on duty to call you back if your call goes to voicemail.

Through your Staff Contact, you should make advance arrangements for the use of downtown equipment. Please indicate your needs on the Observing Run Preparation Form.

Distribution of outside door key cards to Tucson offices is limited. If you need to borrow a key card during your data-analysis directly after an observing run, contact the Kitt Peak Support Office.

For other in-house data analysis services (from past observing runs and the like), write to Dr. Steve Grandi, Manager, Central Computer Services to request the use of the downtown computers. Specify the time and equipment you need. After approval, you can pick up your outside door key card in Room 100. If you wish to use other reduction equipment such as the PDS, Grant Measuring Engine, etc., please send e-mail to the KPNO Director at After receiving approval you will be instructed where to pick up a door key card.

Please note: It is important for you to return the key card at the end of your stay, as we have only a small number of key cards to loan out. Key cards must be returned to the Kitt Peak Support Office, Room 172, prior to your departure. If you leave after normal working hours, the key cards should be placed in the drop box on the wall next to Room 172. Please do not drop outside door key cards in any U.S. mailbox, or attempt to mail them in an envelope that can be destroyed by the U.S. Post Office.


For long-term visitors, if you need to park a private or rented vehicle in either of the NOIRLab parking lots on Cherry Avenue or First Street, request the Kitt Peak Support Office to obtain a Temporary Parking Permit from Central Facilities Operations. Having this permit on the dashboard will prevent having the car towed away. If you are going to arrive late or over a weekend, please advise the Kitt Peak Support Office so that we can have a permit ready for you to pick up.

How to Make Long Distance Calls

You are requested to place all long distance telephone calls on a credit card or collect basis. A number of options exist for placing long distance calls. For your convenience, please refer to the dialing instructions posted at each telephone. If you have any questions regarding telephone use, or need assistance in placing a call, you may reach the Kitt Peak or NOIRLab operator, during normal working hours, by dialing "0". In an emergency situation, please feel free to contact any employee. If you are having trouble placing a call, they will assist you.

Personal or Business Mail

If you have asked people to send you mail here (whether you are on Kitt Peak or in Tucson), please give them the NOIRLab address: Kitt Peak Support Office, P. O. Box 26732, Tucson, AZ 85726. You can pick up your mail in the Kitt Peak Support Office, or we will send it to Kitt Peak if you are still on the mountain.

Use of the Tucson Headquarters Visitor Offices

To arrange for use of Tucson visitor offices either before or after your Kitt Peak observing run please contact the Kitt Peak Observing Support office:

They may have already assigned you an office if you indicated one on your Observing Run Preparation Form.