National Public Radio Headquarters Building in Washington, D.C.

National Public Radio Headquarters Building



Thornton Tomasetti provided structural design of a 330,000-square-foot office building with a newsroom, broadcast studios, a 250-seat theater, meeting rooms, a 10,000-square-foot data center and three levels of below-grade parking. Designed to meet LEED Gold criteria, the structural design includes support for a green roof and a basement rainwater collection cistern. Additional amenities include a fitness center and a rooftop terrace.

A new seven-story building connects to a renovated historic warehouse dating to 1927. The floors of the two structures line up to create a seamlessly integrated space. A 100,000-square-foot, double-height newsroom required a large opening in the fourth floor slab that is crossed by a pedestrian bridge.

Renovation of the 1927 warehouse included design, detailing and inspections for the façade restoration. While initial plans called for patching and repair of the extremely deteriorated roof, our engineers studied a range of options and discovered that careful demolition and replacement was more cost-effective, saving a significant amount in construction costs.

Because the new building’s three below-grade levels extend below the warehouse foundations, micro piles were used to underpin the existing structure. The lateral system of the new building, post-tensioned concrete with shear walls, was designed to take the load of the old building and bring it into conformance with modern code.

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