Office Revitalization for Class A 706 Giddings

McLaren Engineering Group completed structural engineering work on the award-winning 22,000-square-foot office revitalization project at 706 Giddings Avenue in Annapolis, Maryland. Through a complete redesign, the project team added 9,000 square feet as part of both a vertical and horizontal expansion to an existing 13,000-square-foot building, transforming it into a Class A property, and improving the West Annapolis neighborhood.

McLaren helped GriD Architects bring their wholly unique vision to life. 706 Giddings is part of the revitalization of the commercial section of West Annapolis. The new Class A building adds ample office space for leading businesses; since re-opening in 2018, it has attracted prestigious tenants including two national law firms and a private equity firm has spurred two additional redevelopments nearby.

The McLaren Difference: Applied Ingenuity

McLaren performed an initial feasibility study and condition assessment to determine that the office revitalization and expansions were structurally possible. From there, McLaren analyzed and modified the existing sloped roof framing to convert it into occupiable office space as part of a vertical expansion. This new floor level includes additional offices and an outdoor terrace. McLaren also designed a new lobby entrance and added new stair and elevator locations as part of a horizontal expansion that freed up floor space for the offices on the two existing floor levels.

The building renovation presented unique challenges. McLaren was able to design a solution to maintain the structural integrity of the floor framing, while removing an existing obstructive column within the proposed elevator lobby. Since the revitalized building is 33% taller, new steel brace frames were required to accommodate the new loads from the taller building as well as to bring the lateral force resisting system up to current code requirements. McLaren designed and detailed these frames to fit within both the existing and new steel framing.

The new roof was designed to cantilever out in two directions, 25-ft by 16-ft, over the building below. McLaren designed and detailed a low-profile soffit at the edge of the roof, where the steel framing is a maximum of six-inches deep to create this visual. This involved cutting down the typical deeper roof beams at the soffit and adding plate reinforcement to maintain the structural integrity required of the cantilevered elements.

The $4 million project is the winner of the 2018 Urban Land Institute (ULI) Baltimore WaveMaker Award, which honors Maryland’s most successful real estate developments, and swept a variety of regional American Institute of Architects (AIA) awards. These 2018 awards, which recognized outstanding achievements in architectural design, included the Maryland People’s Choice Award, Chesapeake Bay’s Honor Award, and a Baltimore Design Award.