Withdrawal from automobile business: The ARTIC project
In California, railway transportation is currently enjoying a renaissance. In order to facilitate the changeover to this still unfamiliar means of transport for Americans, a new transportation hub is being created in Anaheim. When completed in 2013, it is expected to reach the LEED Platinum Standard.
The Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal Center, abbreviated ARTIC, is being planned by the architect's office HOK and infrastructure planners Parsons Brinckerhoff. In a competition involving some well-known participants, including RMJM, Santiago Calatrava, Pelli Clarke Pelli, SOM and Foster + Partners, they succeeded in getting their concept accepted.
The new railway station is intended to be the most important hub for public rapid transit and long-distance transportation in densely populated Orange County, south-east of Los Angeles. In the first phase of construction, the 180 million dollar project is intended to be a stopping point for the national Amtrak service as well as for regional Metrolink trains, while also functioning as a central junction for Greyhound buses and local bus lines as well as tourist buses. In the second phase, it is to be integrated into the new Californian high-speed network, the financing of which is currently being negotiated. A rail connection from Sacramento to San Diego which is to lead through Anaheim is also being planned, plus a second one that will link Anaheim to Las Vegas. One day, the monorail train to nearby Disneyland could also stop in ARTIC.
The new railway station building, which is to be completed by the middle of 2013, is the central feature of a master plan drawn up by HOK and Brinckerhoff. This plan also provides for office buildings, shops and dense residential construction. Realisation of the surrounding buildings, however, depends on how the American financial and economic crisis develops. The departure hall with a translucent roof on 40 metre-high steel arches will be an eye-catcher and is to be covered with highly effective ETFE foil cushions for insulation. This space was inspired by the large old railway stations of the "golden age of the railway" in the U.S. such as Grand Central Station in New York and the US Navy's Zeppelin hanger, located not far away.
After completion, the project is intended to reach LEED Platinum, the highest standard of the US sustainability certification system. Apart from the good insulation provided by the building shell, photovoltaic and solar energy panels in the roof construction are to contribute towards this goal.