MECKLENBURG COUNTY, NC – The newly constructed $48 million MEDIC Mecklenburg Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Agency Headquarters covers more than 187,000 square feet. Built in response to unprecedented population growth throughout Mecklenburg county, the facility can more effectively respond to record high service demands. At the heart of its design is a seamless blend of aesthetic and functional improvements that addressed major construction challenges and will support expanded EMS service for years to come.
The need for additional right-of-way marked the project’s first major hurdle. The land parcel was home to an abandoned Ford Motor Company manufacturing plant and included CSX-owned property, posing brownfield- and railroad coordination-related challenges. Maintaining vehicular access points for emergency response vehicles, accounting for unmapped utilities, and providing a design that would enhance facility security were also key factors in the early stages of design.
As part of the overall design team, Benesch played a key role in navigating the land acquisition and railroad coordination processes that allowed for further expansion of the existing site. To address non-documented underground utilities as they were encountered in the field, the team provided the needed design changes rapidly to avoid further delays to construction activities.
Benesch’s landscape architects provided sustainable site improvements such as low-maintenance native plant species. Additionally, they worked with a national artist to design several outdoor spaces to enliven the streetscape and provide extra security for the building.
The Agency HQ recently earned two awards: the Associated Builders and Contractors Carolinas Project of the Year and the CPN Star Award, each recognizing the facility’s quality design and construction efforts on a complex large-scale improvement project.
Completed on time and within budget, the new headquarters will contribute to key economic growth in the area over the next 10 to 20 years, servicing the greater Charlotte community with ever-more efficient and adaptive response times.