Conceptual Idea

The vision of the Transit Depot is that of a simple shed structure, derived from the stations of old, but using materials that take advantage of the technology available in 2010. (A shed in the architectural community is defined as a simple roofed structure covering multiple spaces.) Requiring only an environmental shelter to protect the user from the Florida sun and the inevitable rains, our conceptual structure is open air. Think today’s Florida Cracker.

The governing roof shape is based on the profile of the Original Stuart Train Station but modified to maximize it shade-making surface given the orientation of the building on the proposed site. In another gesture towards a “green” solution the maximized roof surface of this design will generate increased water retention.

In response to the defined budget, this shed is made of steel shapes spaced and dimensioned to results in a maximum footprint for a minimal price.

Program Analysis

“The building is expected to provide customer waiting areas, ticketing areas, customer service kiosks, and administrative office space for transit service providers, as well as transit planning and programming staff.”

Also protected beneath the extended roof are two simple (inexpensive) structures providing areas to 1) serve the customers and 2) the transit planning and programming staff. We see these space requirements divided into two distinct but simple buildings. Similar in width but differing in length, these structures are positioned at each end of the transit shed with the open space between them defining the cover waiting area. This waiting area has the flexibility to serve two directions…awaiting either bus or train.

We see the site lending itself to a one-story solution. A two-story building is far too vertical to relate to the horizontality of the railroad infrastructure and the surrounding context. Without need for elevators or multiple stairways, a one-story solution is much more cost effective. We see the height of the shed roof providing the scale appropriate to an important public building.

The location and shape of the two occupied structures beneath the roof is critical to the solution. The customers waiting for the their transportation want a clear visual sight line down the street or down the tracks in anticipation of its arrival. The placement of these buildings supports this goal. In addition this “open” waiting room provides a transparency that leads to a safe environment.

Visually this solution compliments the existing Stuart surrounds and raises the expectations for future development. The architecture relates not to a “Disneyesque” version of the origins of Martin County but the simplicity of the real original structures of the region.

Building type: Transit Station
Proposal 2010
Stuart, Florida
4,000 square feet
Primary components:
Eteel building, rain harvesting system, channel glass