When completing a parking garage, several parts and pieces need to come together to ensure the project is completed on schedule and in budget. While constructing a new parking structure in Madison, we have successfully put together 475 structural pieces of precast.
What is precast?
Precast is concrete that is cast in the form of a structural element before being placed into its final position. For example, the double tees were fabricated offsite for the structure so we could keep working on other elements of the building while these pieces were constructed. Once the pieces were complete, they were brought in on stretch semi-trucks. (Some of the pieces were 60 feet long and weighed 75,000 pounds – talk about a heavy load!)
Parking Structure Overview
Linden Drive parking garage is a 600-stall garage that will be replacing one of the surface lots on the University of Wisconsin – Madison campus. The structure will add needed visitor parking on campus and replace Lot 62. Not only will it be accessible by visitors, but it will also benefit students and staff at the University. As the campus grows, structures like this will become necessary to provide the transportation needs for the campus.
Putting the Pieces Together
Before moving forward with the precast, we started by constructing a mock-up panel to get approval from the Owner and everyone on site. We used two separate companies to assist with making the precast, both fabricators coming from different areas that were hours away. The challenge was timing the deliveries so that when they arrived, we were ready to receive them and put them in place. We placed approximately 18-20 pieces per day, receiving deliveries every 20 minutes or so.
Benefits of Precast
There are a variety of benefits that precast has when compared to cast in place, especially on a complex structure like a parking garage. The benefits include,
- Quick Install – The precast installation process on this project took 6.5 weeks, making for saved schedule time compared to if we had cast in place concrete.
- Durability – The pieces are constructed off-site in a covered facility, meaning they have a long lifespan and are of high quality. Because of this, we can control the environment which leads to less inconsistency and increased durability.
- Cost Effective – By using precast, we saved money in the long run. With a quicker schedule, there is less manpower required and more consistency on-site.
We recently completed another parking garage located in downtown Madison, Judge Doyle Square Parking Structure. To learn more about the project click here!