2019 AOE Winner: California State University Sacramento Parking Structure 5, Sacramento, Calif.

2019 Awards of Excellence: Award for New Sustainable Parking and Transportation Facilities Excellence

California State University Sacramento Parking Structure 5


Owning Agency: California State University, Sacramento

  • California State University Sacramento, Owner
  • Clark Pacific, General Contractor, Precast Concrete Producer and Engineer
  • Dreyfuss+Blackford Architecture, Architect
  • Buehler & Buehler Structural Engineers, Inc., Structural Engineer
  • Fehr & Peers, Traffic Planner

California State University, Sacramento is the largest and fastest growing campus of the 23 CSU campuses. Sustainability was one of the university’s top priorities for its new Parking Structure 5 (PS5). The new structure replaced an existing surface lot, providing 1,750 stalls in six levels. Located by the main entrance of a growing urban college campus, the structure was designed to blend in and complement the dense trees of the nearby arboretum.

Known as the “Big Build,” the parking construction was one of five major projects happening on campus. Therefore, offsite construction was key. While site work commenced, the structural prefabricated concrete elements were sourced and produced locally, at a nearby manufacturing plant that incorporated the innovative architectural finishes. They were then delivered and erected very quickly, helping minimize disruption to the campus. The manufacturing facility derives more than 50 percent of its energy from its own co-located solar array, reducing the environmental effects of manufacturing and transportation. Furthermore, offsite construction removed more than 5,700 worker days from the campus job site to the manufacturing facility, reducing commuter impact by over 10,000 car trips, plus the parking and site impacts those workers would have had created if the project had been delivered conventionally. The prefabricated structure was constructed in less than 11 months, much faster than conventional construction and further reducing construction effects to the campus.

The team was driven to design and deliver solutions that met and exceeded the owner’s parking and quick construction goals. Key to this was bringing on the mechanical, electrical, and plumbing engineers and other design-build subcontractors early. Through the technology, design, innovations, placemaking, and conservation programs implemented for PS5, California State University, Sacramento hopes to achieve a Parksmart Gold certification from the Green Building Certification Institute, making it the highest-performing, most-sustainable parking structure west of the Mississippi.