Kansas City, Missouri
GF Properties Group, the owners of the Federal Aviation Administration/Central Regional Division offices in downtown Kansas City, MO, called on GBA for help in designing a parking garage for FAA employees. The FAA had requested an adjacent parking garage to make employees’ days a little easier.
Located at the intersection of Cherry and Tenth Streets, the garage was one of the first new structures within Kansas City’s East Village Development, a newer mixed-use neighborhood in the northeast section of the downtown loop. It was going to help set the tone for the neighborhood, so the garage not only needed to be functional, it had to be attractive, too.
First, the function: The parking garage accommodates approximately 340 cars. GBA’s designers utilized a single-helix design, which tends to be easy for users to understand and offers more flat (as opposed to sloped) parking and better visibility, for safety.
Second, the design: It can be challenging to create an attractive parking garage. The structure is the length of a city block and needed to be scaled so it didn’t look out of place or overwhelm the surrounding area. GBA architects found a happy medium by combining walkable scale and downtown scale in the design.
Other design elements:
- Decorative architectural precast concrete elements
- Decorative aluminum perforated panels to serve as screens
- Landscape features to provide amenities for pedestrians at the street level
GBA’s team also introduced design ideas to help bring the overall cost of the structure down significantly. For example, the facility has passive ventilation (no HVAC) but was designed with extensive natural ventilation so its users can be comfortable for the short time they are in the garage. GBA also combined cast- in-place and precast elements, to capitalize on the virtues of both and create an economical building.