When it comes to sealing a parking garage expansion joint, EMSEAL has you covered. The South Boston Waterfront Transportation Center (SBWTC) in the heart of the Seaport District in Boston is a multifaceted 500,000 SF parking facility that caters to the eclectic lifestyle of this New England hub. Most would say that parking structures are typically quite mundane, but Fennick McCredie Architects successfully designed and created a parking facility that flips that common conception on its head. EMSEAL is proud to say that our expansion joints cover and seal every level of this incredible parking structure.
Seal The Building Envelope
What really makes this a success story is the fact that EMSEAL worked collaboratively with the contractor Beacon Waterproofing, the designer, Fennick McCredie and the GC, Skanska, on the various details that traversed the garage. They knew and believed that EMSEAL’s custom factory fabricated transitions would ensure watertight results. From the 42-inch column vertical upturns for fall-protection, to the 3-hour fire-rated coverplate system (SJS-FR3), EMSEAL had a solution for all design considerations. This is why EMSEAL was entrusted to come in and seal their entire building envelope.
Plow Resistant, Watertight Top Deck
It all started with sealing the top deck, and this was accomplished by CAD-designed custom DSM transitions. Every parapet, column, and curb were measured, designed, and created for the installer to easily drop-in each section (see detail image)
To prevent plow damage, blockouts were formed and filled with Emcrete elastomeric concrete, providing an impact-absorbing header. The low resin-to-aggregate ratio of no more than 1:2 provides strength and flexibility to the joint edge. Now that the upper deck was sealed, strengthened, and watertight, it was time to tackle all eight levels of the intermediate parking facility.
The parking garage is split-column construction which is uniquely suited for factory welded transitions that we offer. This is where EMSEAL provided its Thermaflex wing joint system, TCR series, to accommodate the various transitions that occurred throughout the intermediate level of the garage. From horizontal tee transitions to 42-inch blockout-mounted upturns, EMSEAL had a solution for every condition. Continuity of seal was key at these locations to ensure watertight transitions.
3-hour Fire-Rated Plaza
But we didn’t stop there… Next were the 3-hour fire-rated joints in high traffic areas that needed to be addressed. That’s where EMSEAL’s R&D and engineering department came to shine. Engineering provided the drawing so that R&D could model an FEA (Finite Element Analysis). Ultimately, this led to an Engineered Judgement being provided to maintain the 3-hour fire rating across the highly trafficked concourse of the WTC Plaza. A 3/8” thick stainless-steel SJS-FR3 system was developed to ensure life safety for all who frequent the garage. And again, a custom transition from SJS-FR3 to WFR3, tested according to UL-2079 for walls, was supplied to achieve compartmentalization of this location.
In the end, EMSEAL pulled out all the stops and made believers out of all that were enveloped in this project. Just another day at EMSEAL, but for everyone else involved, we continue to show that EMSEAL doesn’t shy away from the difficult conditions that can and do occur on these construction projects. Attention to detail and well-thought-out elements of the SBWTC is what made this project one to highlight.