The City of St. Catharines Carlisle Street Parking Facility earned the 2012 Niagara Community Design Award for Architecture, and woven wire mesh from W.S. Tyler was one of the key design elements incorporated into the structure.
Macdonald Zuberec Ensslen Architects (MZE), St. Catharines, designed the new facility, which replaced an older parking garage, and Toronto-based Halsall Associates was the structural engineer and LEED consultant. Development of the facility began in 2010 and the project was completed in January 2012.
MZE designed the structure to be aesthetically pleasing while incorporating sustainable materials and principles to achieve LEED silver status. The six-story structure features 600 parking spaces and 1,200 square meters of commercial space. Niagara Region, which presents the award each year, says it recognized the facility “…for the pleasing design that both complements and integrates with the surrounding fabric and uses, while also featuring environmentally-friendly features.”
MZE selected W.S. Tyler’s architectural mesh not only to enhance the architectural features of the structure, but also to take advantage of its sustainable characteristics. W.S. Tyler manufactures multiple woven wire mesh patterns with an average of 60 to 70 percent recycled content. In addition, the mesh has an end life cycle that is 100 percent recyclable.
The strategically placed DOGLA-TRIO woven wire mesh is one of the most visible features used to support the architects’ vision. MZE designed the structure to incorporate 860 square meters of the wire mesh on the outside walls and inside the stairwells. The largest panels, which are approximately 26 meters tall, extend through the center of the stair towers from the ground floor to the roof.
The open area of W.S. Tyler’s mesh permits natural light to enter while providing protection from the sun. It also allows fresh air to flow through the facility while also allowing harmful emissions to quickly dissipate. In addition, it is partially transparent. When lit from the outside, the mesh appears opaque; when lit from the inside, it becomes transparent. It also reduces headlight glare and provides adequate visibility to reduce the likelihood of crime.
Overall, the Carlisle Street facility was constructed with concrete that includes 15 percent recycled material, and the design of the roof allows it to collect rainwater for use in washing multiple decks of the parking structure and for local landscaping. The facility has motion-activated LED light fixtures that use up to 50 percent less energy than traditional lighting. The garage also is equipped with designated charging station areas for electric vehicles.
Architectural mesh for use in parking garages is a primary focus of W.S. Tyler Canada’s Architecture and Design Division. It can weave the mesh with a variety of alloys, including stainless steel, carbon steel, aluminum, brass and additional mixed alloys. Mesh patterns, wire diameters and openings are also fully customizable to meet specific design or aesthetic requests. The vertical façade mounting system for the architectural mesh is capable of tensioning a single mesh panel, exceeding 60 meters, over the entire vertical span of a building via a top and bottom structural connection only, with no additional hardware required at the vertical sides.
Architects have used W.S. Tyler woven wire mesh around the world to increase the visual appeal and safety of structures, including the Halifax International Airport Parkade in Halifax, Canada; the Aspire Tower, landmark for the 2006 Asian Games, in Doha, Qatar; and St. Paul’s Hospital in Hong Kong.