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Parking for growth

image West elevation of the East Campus Parking Garage, The University of Texas at Austin

AUSTIN - SpawGlass Contractors teamed with project architect PGAL to deliver a new parking garage that will provide a parking solution to accommodate future growth for The University of Texas at Austin east of IH-35.





    This solution was accomplished through early studies conducted by the SpawGlass team, PGAL, project engineers Datum Engineers and parking consultant Walker Consultants to determine the best design elements to meet the needs of the university, students and patrons in the most efficient way.
    The new 725,000sf East Campus Parking Garage located at I-35 and Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. incorporates the use of cascading ramps, allowing users to traverse multiple levels without having to travel through the parking area. The parking garage also includes offices for the University’s Parking and Transportation Services Department, as well as bike racks and bike lockers. 
    The cast-in-place parking garage was built in two phases that operate as a single unit. Because the site is within view of the Texas State Capitol, it was subject to height restrictions. Phase 1 is seven levels with one below grade. Phase 2 is five levels.
    About halfway through Phase 1, the university added a retail space on level one of Phase 2 to allow for a small grocery store that will serve the  future student residents in the area.
    Due to the location of the project it faced challenges from heavy traffic and constant congestion.  SpawGlass worked with TxDOT to secure a lane to feed the project’s materials and trucks to the site as efficiently and safely as possible.
    In addition, the 22-month project schedule was complicated with heavy rainfall as the project team was doing earthwork and drilling piers  through the first three months on the job.
    Despite the weather delays and other challenges and changes, the SpawGlass team beat their substantial completion date of Feb. 16th and turned over the garage a semester early, performing approximately $11 million of the contract for the construction of the east campus garage with a daily average of 10 to 15 SpawGlass team members onsite. Concrete accounted for the largest part of the self-perform scope, including site work concrete foundation, walls, slab-on-grade and deck embeds.     “Self-performing much of the concrete activities allowed SpawGlass to more efficiently manage the project schedule and execute daily activities,” says SpawGlass Project Executive Jeff Eubank who credits the entire design/build team with having a “can do will do” attitude and doing whatever it took to successfully complete the project.
    In closing, Eubank adds, “When this 2,000-car parking garage is filled to capacity for an event, the entire facility can be emptied within 26 minutes.”
    SpawGlass is a commercial and civil contractor with nine offices across Texas. –cmw

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Carol Wiatrek meditor@constructionnews.net