National Harbor Building "M" Parking Garage
Structural Precast Elements:
Old Baltimore warehouses inspired the overall aesthetic for National Harbor
National Harbor is a brand new city on the Maryland bank of the Potomac River, just a few miles south of the District of Columbia. The Fleet Garage connects to a Class A office building, and both contain similar architectural cladding strategies. The rhythm of the openings in the garage's exterior bearing wall system mimics the fenestration pattern of the office building. The facades of the garage incorporate traditional and modern elements. The single-source precast manufacturer enabled the integration of multiple elements and transformed them into a consistent end product. The more traditional brick facades compliment the adjacent monolithic and modern panels. The monolithic panels contain one mix that was sandblasted to achieve two textures and tones. Finally, the crisp precast edges allowed for the seamless integration of curtain wall and storefront into the design.
The construction of the Fleet Garage coincided with several other buildings in the first phase of National Harbor's development. The expeditious nature of precast construction allowed for rapid assembly in the massive "sandbox" environment that afforded only narrow alleys between building parcels. Off-site casting of the precast components occurred concurrently with the extensive pile driving activities for the foundation, which also assisted the construction schedule.