The landlocked urban site of Memorial Hospital in Colorado Springs presented special challenges when the need for additional parking to accommodate a growing patient, visitor and staff population was recognized. This project involved the new construction of a seven-story 1,500 car parking garage, elevator tower, and new north building entrance. Due to the neighboring fully occupied, 400-bed critical care hospital, the site was limited in space and time for construction. The seven-story garage has one and one-half stories below grade, penetrating the natural water table. The challenge was to de-water the site, complete excavation and orchestrate a winter construction project, within the footprint of the final building. The project also included sitework with the realignment of Foote Street, the street that runs along the west side of the site.
As part of its ongoing community relations campaign the Hospital was committed to building a garage that did not look like the stereotypical horizontal parking structures seen throughout the country. The design features a distinctive "vertical feel " with a two-story colonnade to accommodate ambulances and over the road trucks. The innovative look was carried through the project by utilizing brick inserts in the precast concrete panels. The bricks relate to the existing building materials used throughout the rest of the campus, retaining the unifying look of the campus.