Subterranean garage designed to keep classic cars in top condition
Commissioned to create a private showroom for a collection of enviable cars, Arup and Unism have designed a cave-like lair that would be meticulously engineered to help ensure the vehicles are kept in perfect condition.
The subterranean garage is planned for Warsaw, Poland, in a leafy residential area and will be situated next to the owner's home. Access will be gained either via a one-person elevator or a twisting car ramp that was carefully calculated because of a lack of space – Arup even had to study the turning circle and tire width of Aston Martins vehicles to make sure everything would fit.
The garage will be 6.8 m (22 ft) underground and will have spaces for a collection of eight cars in all, including an Aston Martin DB2 Drophead and a Vantage. There will also be two extra parking spaces for future acquisitions, and a turning platform installed to make stowing the cars easier, plus a car fume extraction system built into the floor. During the design stage, the team reached out directly to Aston Martin for advice.
"To ensure the perfect conditions to store a classic car collection, Unism contacted Aston Martin to discuss recommendations, which Arup then incorporated into every aspect of the design," explains the engineering giant. "A river, located less than 30 meters [98 ft] from the showroom, posed an additional challenge with groundwater levels reaching nearly four meters [13 ft] into the excavation, potentially jeopardizing the digging works in the short term, and posing risk of damage to the collection in the long term. Our team designed a double-layer solution to protect against leaks. Metal sheet casing will enable the digging works. Once the excavation is ready, a layer of jet grouting will waterproof the garage from the bottom. As an additional insurance, the museum walls will be made of water-resistant reinforced concrete. Together, these solutions will create a bathtub-like structure, shielding the showroom against water and humidity."
To ensure the cars don't get too cold during Poland's chilly winters, Arup has designed an energy efficient ground-source heat pump system that will feature 100-m (328-ft)-long pipes that are buried into the ground and collect the Earth's heat. Additionally, thanks to its underground location, very little energy will be needed to cool down the showroom during summer time. An underground water tank will also be built to collect rainwater and irrigate the garden above, and a large skylight will provide natural lighting.
The project is expected to be completed sometime in 2022. If you'd like something along these lines yourself, Aston Martin also offers its own similar service that promises to build well-heeled car enthusiasts the ultimate lair or gallery for showing off their collections.