John King of SFGate covers the WRNS-designed Mission Bay Parking Structure — a story of how a parking garage can appear as art.
“Anybody with eyes can see that Northern California is awash in a sea of stucco… So when the material is used in a way that shows how compelling it can be, we should pay attention — even if the building in question is something as mundane as a parking garage.
In 2009, Zahner completed the facade system for the WRNS-designed Mission Bay Block 27 Parking Structure. The 1,420 stall garage quickly made headlines for its bold take on how the parking garage typology has often been overlooked, and yet it has a bright future for innovative aesthetics.
Below is an excerpted article by John King from SFGate which describes the artistic approach taken by the building’s designer and contractors.
Anybody with eyes can see that Northern California is awash in a sea of stucco… So when the material is used in a way that shows how compelling it can be, we should pay attention — even if the building in question is something as mundane as a parking garage.
“Some of the other buildings in Mission Bay feel so hermetically sealed, we thought a little bit of poetic levity was in order,” says Bryan Shiles, the S in WRNS. “The white stucco lets us grab light and play with light and shadows.”
The sense of play, the rhythm of the cuts sliding in 3 feet from the bright outer walls to the punched dark voids, is best experienced when traveling by. But it’s also a pleasure up close – which is where the stucco’s quality comes in. At 50 South St., Alexandria hired WRNS and Overaa Construction on a design-build basis. The stucco was applied by a subcontractor, the Raymond Group.
Except for the circulation tower, which rises at the northeast corner like a stucco-cloaked Polynesian figurine, they’re cloaked in a perforated aluminum scrim manufactured by A. Zahner, the firm that did the blue steel of the cube that pops from the Contemporary Jewish Museum (WRNS worked with Daniel Libeskind on that design).