Situated near the corner of High Street and Evans Avenue on the University of Denver campus in Denver Colorado, the project included a 190,000 square foot four level parking structure for 584 vehicles and a 14,000 square foot, five level, office building for the Campus Safety Department. The parking structure utilized a precast concrete long-span structural system, with a cast-in-place topping to facilitate the owners aggressive construction schedule. Finish materials were carefully considered and the amounts of each were varied to manage the owner’s budget, with hand laid brick at the first level, column covers and stair towers, and using copper sheet metal panels and screens at upper level spandrel beams. The office building structural system consisted of load-bearing clay masonry walls and precast concrete floor planks. The project components shared space at the basement level.
As the Engineer of Record for this project, Structural Consultants, Inc. provided full design, construction document preparation, and construction administration services. The project was initially awarded to the design team in the first quarter of 2005, and then the project went on hold until November of 2005. However, the owner did not want to alter their schedule to open the parking structure by Labor Day weekend of 2006 to facilitate students and their families arriving on campus to move-in for the fall semester. The design team, including the DU University Architect worked hand-in-hand through the winter of 2005 and 2006 to develop the design to fit within the owner’s budget and strike the desired balance between the DU campus architectural standards and the cost of construction. Construction documents were issued in two packages to expedite the construction schedule. The first package included the foundations and precast framing, the second package included the office building and stair/elevator tower construction. The contractors diligent execution of the construction schedule allowed the team to achieve the goal of acquiring a TCO by labor day weekend for partial use of the lower two levels of the parking structure for returning students. Another key challenge in the design development of the project was matching the floor elevations of the parking structure and office building accounting for the floor slopes, expansion joints, stair configurations and masonry coursing requirements.