Norwich Intermodal Transportation Center Parking Structure
Groundbreaking for phase one the Norwich Intermodal Transportation Center, Norwich Connecticut, began in July 2010 and the facility was completed on time and on budget in the Spring of 2012. The precast concrete facility brings together several modes of transportation including cars, buses, taxis and limousines. Strategically built on Hollyhock Island near Route 82, it will allow phase two to include future access to rail and ferry service.
Designed by Domenech Hicks and Krockmalnic, (DHK) of Boston and New York, the façade of the parking structure features a inlaid combination brick with stone look. DHK choose a thin brick façade which uses thin slices of real brick placed on a form with concrete poured over them securing them and producing a large finished panel. The result is almost impossible to tell it from a traditional masonry structure. The benefit of thin brick precast concrete wall panels goes beyond aesthetic appeal to include expedient erection, low maintenance and reduced construction cost.
The graceful stone arches over the windows are actually precast concrete that is cast in forms along with the thin brick inlay producing one large panel that includes the window and is ready to erect. Precast concrete perimeter columns were designed to look like stone and used to eliminate corner joints and expedite construction. The resulting design has a look of permanence that will endure into the future.
The ability to cast forms into practically any shape provides architects with unprecedented design freedom. According to Bruce Hultgren, RA, AIA “precast concrete was used to maximize span lengths needed for the design and its use shortened the construction schedule.” DHK worked closely with Blakeslee Prestress, Inc., Connecticut, who produced all 393 precast concrete pieces for the project and erected them on the island and over an active street.
The $21.8 million project has been in the works since 1995 and has finally come to fruition with a well conceived design that not only promises a new era in transportation for the area, but will compliment future maritime traffic and travel into the harbor. This finished first phase is three levels, a total of 61,940 sq.ft. with 162 parking spaces, taxi and bus bays. Phase II is next, but certainly not another 16 years away according to Mayor Peter Nystrom.
Structural Precast Elements:
• 84 Double Tees
• 5 Girders
• 20 Columns
• 9 Shear Walls
• 8 Wall Columns
• 33 Spandrels
• 13 Stairs
• 9 Solid Slabs
• 212 Wall Panels