Florida/Caribbean Architect - Spring 2013 - (Page 18)
St. LEo uNivErSity PArKiNg gArAgE
ANd turf StAdiuM, st. leo, fl
LuNz PrEBor fowLEr ArcHitEctS, lakeland, fl
“Colleges and universities must not only get more out of a project for less money, but often the
amount of available physical space is limited. This parking garage provided an elegant solution to
two unique problems: increasing parking and creating more green space for student activities.”
– Victor Prebor, AIA, Director of Design, and Lisa Milam, AIA, Lead Designer
The SLU women’s lacrosse team practices in the artificial turn stadium.
Photo by Dennis Eckel, Eckel Advertising & Photography.
Aerial view, above left, of the stadium and parking garage beneath. Photo by Aerial Innovations.
Orientation map, above right, shows the juxtaposition of north-south playing field and east-west
practice fields. Photo by Lunz Prebor Fowler Architects’ staff.
The concession stand on the west side of the facility serves as a gathering space before and after
games. Photo by Lunz Prebor Fowler Architects’ staff.
St. Leo University, chartered in 1889, is
located 30 miles north of Tampa. Today,
16,000 students attend the school. Typical
of many educational institutions, St. Leo
University (SLU) faces the challenge of
a burgeoning student population and
academic program expansion without the
ability to increase land area. In order to meet
the university’s need for staff and student
parking while providing additional space for
surface expansion, the design solution had
to be innovative and flexible. The solution
was to work with the topography and build
a parking garage into the hillside. The multifunctional result is a 150,000-square-foot,
730-car garage topped by an artificial turf
stadium, making SLU one of only three
campuses in the U.S. with an NCAA soccer/
lacrosse field above it. Because the garage is
built into the hillside, it blends seamlessly
into the campus. The exposed stair towers
and entrance were designed to compliment
the university’s Mission Style buildings.
The four-bay garage is an open structure
with security as one of its main imperatives.
The facility is well-lit and ventilated and
employs security cameras and emergency
blue light phones. Emergency Weather
Alert horns throughout the garage are
tied to a campus-wide alert system.
Vehicular entry is at the mid-level, where
a parking space counter leads drivers to
open spaces. Beneath the access ramps,
there is 6,000 square feet of storage
space that houses the garage’s emergency
sprinkler system. Pedestrian access to
the playing field and the main campus
is via stair towers on each level. Stadium
lighting allows the field to be used day
and night and user amenities include
concession stand, restrooms and press
box, along with Wi-Fi in the bleachers.
The artificial turf field is oriented northsouth with two practice fields running
east-west. The field is elevated from three
to 10 feet above the adjacent roadway.
In addition to sporting events, the playing
field/stadium’s assembly load is designed
to support a potential 6,000-person
graduation ceremony or outdoor concert.
The $12,699,201 building was completed
$4,200 below budget. ■
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Florida/Caribbean Architect - Spring 2013
Editorial / Diane D. Greer
2013 Legislative Wrap-Up
Alfred B. Maclay School Pre-K Building
Pasco Middle School
St. Leo University Parking Garage and Turf Stadium
Warner University Agricultural Complex
The Tin House
Could You Learn to Love LEED?
Florida/Caribbean Architect - Spring 2013