Bomel Construction Co., Anaheim, and International Parking Design,  Sherman Oaks, recently completed construction on a 1,200-stall, 500,000-sq-ft parking structure complex that serves the Thornton Hospital Cardiovascular Center at UC San Diego’s East Campus in La Jolla.

Photo courtesy of Bomel Construction
The new parking structure/soccer field at UCSD.

The Bomel-IPD team developed a plan to build two adjoining structures, instead of the owner’s original plan to erect one, and overcame an assortment of pesky construction challenges to complete the $24 million project on time and within budget.

The project’s pre-existing conditions included a sloping canyon site, unforgiving soil, a proposed adjacent soccer/athletic field and a desire to keep a low profile in a scenic and ecologically sensitive area.

The university originally envisioned one parking structure with more than 1,200 stalls on seven or eight levels. But Bomel and IPD designed and built two adjoining garages and a soccer field and archery range that meet the university’s parking needs and allow for a more-aesthetically pleasing facility.

The end result is a two-level garage (called the East Structure) with 428 stalls and a five-level garage (the West Structure) with 819 stalls. The current configuration produces a much-lower building profile within the canyon and positions the synthetic-turf soccer field and archery range on top of the two-level garage, freeing up valuable land for other uses.

Other members of the design-build team included Wolf Architecture, Hope Engineering, RBF Consulting, Syska Hennessey, PB&A and Spurlock-Poirier.

The scope of construction involved much more than erecting two side-by-side, poured-in-place-concrete parking structures.

Bomel’s management of infrastructure improvements included trenching and the installation of numerous below-grade electrical conduits, cables, vaults and water and gas lines.

“We also installed 10 precast concrete vaults along an active road adjacent to an operating medical center,” said Kasey Shay, Bomel’s senior project manager.

The location of the canyon site, which is visible from the heavily traveled Interstate 5 freeway, necessitated some creative thinking during the project’s planning phase.