The Shockey Precast Group was contracted by general contractor Harvey Cleary to design, manufacture, and erect the 378,848 SF Howard Hughes Merriweather Parking Structure in Columbia, Maryland. The project offered several interesting design and erection challenges, including coordinating site access and precast erection to accommodate the adjacent Howard Hughes Merriweather office building construction site, which was located only 30 feet from the parking structure construction site. Since precast erection of the parking structure took place through the spring and into early summer, SPG’s Field Coordination team was also required to work around the concert schedule at Merriweather Post Pavilion.
For the nine-level parking structure with eight suspended precast levels, SPG produced and erected a total of 346,276 SF of precast. The structure’s design included two open sides of one monumental stair tower enclosed with window curtain walls with two elevator cores adjacent to it. The structure also features a second elevator tower designed to house two elevators. The elevator tower offered the challenge of being on a 25-degree angle from the parking structure’s South elevation. Due to the angle, it required skewed wall ends and skewed double tees in that area. The second stair tower features a glass window curtain wall to allow in light and provide an elevated view of the surrounding area.
Drainage & Design
The parking structure’s drainage system presented its own challenge. Due to an existing underground rainwater harvesting system for the adjacent office building, access was restricted for that part of the North elevation. This design feature required SPG to use drain piping that differed from what is used in typical parking structures. For most SPG parking structures, drains are piped to a center grid and the pipes drop straight down to underground pipes. For the Howard Hughes Merriweather Parking Structure, the unique drainage feature required SPG to install a drainage system that would exit the building all on one side into a LEED-certified drainage holding basin.
From a design standpoint, the precast had to accommodate an intricate exterior metal grating system that hung from the precast at different locations on each elevation. SPG created special spandrel shapes to accommodate the exterior hanging façade. Precast erection began on March 30, 2016 and was completed on July 5, 2016. Through the flexibility and resourcefulness of SPG’s team, precast erection was completed three and a half weeks early, with finishing completed in mid-August. The Howard Hughes Merriweather Parking Structure project is an example of successful communication, collaboration, and problem-solving by SPG and the project team to achieve maximum value for the owner.
Owner: HRD Development Management
Architect: Design Collective
General Contractor: Harvey-Cleary Builders
Precaster: The Shockey Precast Group