Madison Fire Station #11|
PLUNKETT RAYSICH ARCHITECTS, LLP
2310 Crossroads Drive, Suite 200, Madison, WI 53718
Total Square Feet:
Nov 2004 to Oct 2005
STRUCTURAL ENGINEER: Pierce Engineers, Inc. - 10 West Mifflin Street, Suite 205, Madison, WI 53703
GENERAL CONTRACTOR: Miron Construction Company, Inc. - 1471 McMahon Drive, Neenah, WI 54956
MECHANICAL & ELECTRICAL ENGINEER: Hein Engineering Group - 319 West Beltline Highway, #111, Madison, WI 53713
On the fringe of Madison's east side, a new fire station stretches across the developing prairie, the first building in a walkable neighborhood of commercial, retail, and residential projects. The owner's program for this fire station consists of a 4,000-square-foot apparatus room for six vehicles including engines, ladder truck, and EMT vehicles. Support space lines both sides of the floor, while six overhead doors allow drive-through capability. A watch room sits prominently at the front of the space, with views inside swell as outside across the drive-out apron. Three officers quarters and eight sleeping quarters are served by a day-lit exercise room, kitchen and dining area with a south-facing outdoor terrace. A windowless dayroom occupies the center of the station, functioning’s a dark box for television viewing. Finally, the owner's program includes a community room, with a dedicated public entrance.
The fire station sits on a sloping tapered site, defined by four urban streets with sidewalks. Its main facade and entrance face east, along the neighborhood's entrance boulevard, Crossing Place. Its north facade, anchored by the community room, tightly aligns with the edge of Grand Crossing Road, the main east-west route within the neighborhood. The parking and apparatus entrance lie adjacent to Morgan Way, a short connector street, while the pergola-covered terrace overlooks Nelson Road, the main traffic artery.
The building's position on the site is influenced by two major factors. First, the site's rolling terrain forces the building away from the northeast corner to allow for a shallow drive-out apron. The apron would have been too steep for exiting rescue vehicles if the building were close to the corner. Second, a large detention basin that drains a portion of the neighborhood occupies one-fourth of the site, forcing the building away from the southeast corner. The entire wetland perimeter is planted with prairie grasses, minimizing the overall impact of mowing and watering. All storm water from the building and 18-stall parking area is directed to and filtered by this natural amenity.
The design solution seeks to integrate disparate programmatic elements in a planar composition of brick, glass, and aluminum, communicating a restrained civic presence. Serving firefighters and the public, the fire station conveys importance without being pretentious. Large volumes, like the apparatus room, are broken down with transparency and thin planes while smaller volumes, like the officer's quarters, are rendered more massively, thus carefully balancing the fire station’s different elements. To add more stature and permanence to this one story structure, an oversized aluminum pergola stands above the watch room, directing focus to the main entrance. While site and functional constraints push the building away from its corners, the edge-hugging community room employs pedestrian-friendly canopies, signage, and lighting to address its urban context. This metal and brick box is flanked on either side by double rows of canopy trees, which when mature, will extend a denser urban edge to each corner.
DIV 04: Brick: Glen Gery.
DIV 07: Metal Roof: Firestone
Metals®/UnaClad®; Membrane: Carlisle SynTec, Johns Manville.
DIV 08: Entrances & Storefronts, Windows: Kawneer.
DIV 09: Carpet: Lees.
DIV 10: Sunshades: Greenheck.
DIV 16: Lighting: Lithonia, Visa.