by Herald Tribune

The St. Armands parking garage that opened last year has been honored in the Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute’s 2020 Design Awards contest.

The $15 million, 482-space city of Sarasota-owned garage on North Adams Drive received the All-Precast Concrete Solution Award.

It was one of 25 projects and five honorable mentions awarded by judges for design excellence in building and transportation categories.

The award stated that the four-level structure’s design features a soaring, white precast concrete structure, with dramatic exterior cascading stairs, a metal mesh twisted facade that catches the sunlight, and solar panels on the third level that provide electricity and shaded parking. A cast-in-place topping was implemented on the two-main parking bays for increased durability and to minimize sound for the adjacent residential neighbors.

“Our biggest challenge was settling on a design that balanced creating an efficient structure on the L-shaped footprint while incorporating an aesthetically pleasing facade,” said Mark Santos, parking practice builder for engineer Kimley-Horn and Associates.

The garage also contains five electric vehicle charging stations, including one DC fast charger; bicycle storage and repair station; and public restrooms. Twenty-three surface lot spaces adjacent to the garage also were created.

Coreslab Structures of Tampa was the PCI-certified precast concrete producer. Architect was Solstice Planning and Architecture of Sarasota. Contractor was Jon F. Swift Construction and Haskell of Sarasota. Precast concrete specialty engineer was Stehler Structural Engineering of White Bear Lake, Minnesota. PCI-certified erector was Specialty Concrete Services of Umatilla.

A panel that included precast concrete producers, engineers and architects judged nominees on aesthetics, structural and use versatility; site, energy and operational efficiency, and risk reduction; and resiliency, such as structure durability, multi-hazard protection, and safety and health.