Centrally located one block from the South Carolina state capitol, this nine-story, 175,000 square-foot building is a site specific response to the client’s request for a prominent, yet conservative, addition to the urban texture of downtown Columbia. The historic street setting reinforced the client’s image for a contextually sensitive and traditionally civic design. The building serves as the corporate headquarters for the institution and includes a public garden plaza, a local banking branch, a grand entry lobby, and a below-grade 400-car parking garage.
The decision to incorporate the building’s underground parking was crucial to the civility and function of the site, the ‘roof’ of which became a prominent garden plaza richly planted and publically accessible. The new park-like space functions as an urban oasis rather than a corporate plaza. The garden is a popular gathering spot for downtown workers and public and private events including corporate functions, wedding receptions, and local festivals. In 2006 a partnership of public officials and private citizens awarded the plaza a Columbia Choice Design Award recognizing the design as an environmental improvement that elevates Columbia’s urban life.
Columbia, South Carolina
177,000 sf, 197,000 sf below-grade parking